Just last week, I went to Walmart, one of the few places I go to purchase groceries. Now, I am not a big fan of grocery shopping. I spend way too much money and I know it’s not a good idea, but I eat out a lot.

Well, this particular night I decided to buy something for dinner. A typical thing for me…as my bachelor life affords me the great pleasure of not having much…1 pot, 1 pan maybe a skillet if I even know what that is! I don’t even have much of the utensils necessary for me to do any decent amount of cooking.

Pretty sad at my age to be this way, but I believe there are certain skills for some, right?  Where someone’s skills would be to cook a fantastic rotisserie chicken…my skills come to at least knowing what  chicken looks like!!

Now, I need to let you know too that my grocery shopping abilities contribute to my hatred for the sport. To me, it’s just too difficult. Too much having to think about future days and what I need and preparing and planning. Sure, my life in general is full of planning and preparing for my future, but when it comes to my personal life and food, not so much. The details…I make it as easy as can be when I go grocery shopping for sure.

So, back to Walmart. I had a hankering for a steak this particular night. As I meander around to the meat section and walk past the freezer boxes, I notice these boxed up steaks that I had a couple of times in the past. Now, If I remember correctly they weren’t bad. In fact they were awesome! Very easy to deal with. They started frozen and all I needed to do is defrost and throw on a grill or stove.

They were juicy, tender, kept the size as they cooked, all that good stuff. Right off the stove they had that look of exquisite deliciousness. I was truly excited at the fact that I would have one of these steaks for dinner. So I hurried up, grabbed whatever else I needed at the store, went home and began the defrost process. Defrosting stuff is a story in of itself…working the defrost on my microwave takes a rocket science degree. I can never figure out exactly how to work all the buttons. I know, I’m a loser. Whatever.

Anyhow, I  figured it out.

Then I started cooking the steak. I seasoned it, peppered it. Threw a little steak seasoning over it. Not much…I didn’t want to dry it up. Several minutes of flips and flops and little more seasoning, and the steak was sizzling and about done. I am telling you all, it looked good! It was so juicy looking and savory. I was getting excited about sinking my choppers into that. I was pretty proud of what I did too!

I even threw on some ramen noodles on the stove to add to the mood and for a nice bedding of pasta. Remember, bachelor here… 🙂

I was ready. I had my plate next to my stove to the left. I was ready and my steak was juicy and steamy. I worked all day and gave several presentations. I was starved and was looking so forward to this. So I grabbed my butter knife…yes a butter knife. No meat cutting knives available at my crib. So I started cutting and cutting.  Piece by piece…ready to begin my feast. Oh how tender it was. I even tasted little bit. Mmmm that was nice.

As I started cutting, my plate started slipping.  Not paying any attention to the direction…or speed of my plate. I was met by a surprise of the slip. The slip of my entire plate flipping over as it reached the edge of my kitchen counter. Flipping over and making its way all the way down to the floor. The kitchen floor…

…a bachelor’s kitchen floor

Now, I’m not saying gross or anything, but you know, not something I’d be willing to even take the 5 second rule and grab it and go. Each of the pieces were strewn throughout the kitchen floor, even underneath the bottom edge of my counter doors. You know where some of the crumbs maybe wind up. So there it was…my dream. My destiny to eat that well deserved and well-anticipated dinner.

Something I had looked forward to so bad, for so long that evening…all laying on my floor…my dog sitting right next to me, just flipping with excitement! It was gone. All of it, just laying there. I actually started to laugh. Thought it kind of funny at the time, and actually never really got too angry over it. I picked it all up, scooped it back on my plate and walked somberly over to the sink, and dumped it in to reach my garbage disposal for a finale of the shortest life span of a juicy piece of steak.

Yeah, I looked forward to this and dreamed of what it would taste like. It was the single thing I looked forward to that night. Just gone. No more. I didn’t even have much of an opportunity to relish the taste some more. I realized how lucky I was though, while I was cooking it. I reflected back to when I ate this kind of steak before and remembered its exquisite deliciousness. So, I was excited about this. Thinking back made me even more excited.

But, it also fulfilled me. It fulfilled me in a way that I felt a little satisfied the more I thought about my past encounters with this steak. Or anything really in life. It’s called: not taking things for granted. As you leave for college, or as another school year ends, think back to those things you took for granted this year and how would you have changed them if you could?

This actually happens a lot to us in many other ways though doesn’t it…in life? That piece of steak represents a normal human emotion, reaction and anticipation for things in life that we often relish and appreciate and even take for granted. Whatever it is, we have it. Many times we feel lucky at the moment to have it, but I think a lot of times many of us tend to take for granted what we have and might not even realize how long we’ve had something or how lucky we are to have it until its gone…before it slips right out of our hands and lives.

But relishing that. Savoring every moment that you have with it or him or her or whatever. Appreciating its beauty while you have it whether or not you keep it. That’s the meat of it all. There are moments in our life that are life-altering; emotion-generating; and those regular moments of pride and joy. Even the sad and bad moments. Be sure to relish those and never take them for granted. Chances are, you may have a Deja Vu experience one day, and it may be a benefit!

These are the moments to savor…everyone of them. College is the best years of your life.

Your Success is My success,


Keith Lipke is a careers and college recruiter, coach, mentor and blogger at The Hope Chest. His passion is to educate, inspire, and give hope to young people along their journey who need it upon their search for the right career.

Steak image from: http://forkyou.wordpress.com/2008/10/01/ketogenerians/