Overhearing the conversations of others is pretty common in our society today. No matter how hard we try to pretend otherwise in a crowded setting, our brains tend to fixate on the various excitement going on around us. It's unintentional in most cases, but eavesdropping happens.
My old office, in the early 90s, used to be one big, open room. We did not have dividers between desks while we spoke on the phone or typed out psychological reports. The internet didn't exist as it does today, so secret online shopping while at work was unheard of.
I had stepped out of the BIG ROOM for a moment to make some copies one afternoon. When I came back, one of my coworkers was on the phone. Of course I heard every word--her desk was less than ten feet away! I pretended that I wasn't listening, to be polite. I even got out some test manuals and flipped through some pages. (One was upside down, and I did not even notice. This is why I am not an actor)
"Yes, I'd like to order a bikini," Paulette said. I immediately became jealous that she was a)able to wear a bikini, and b)going someplace where she could wear a bikini. It was cold outside!
That's about the end of the conversation, I thought, opening a folder and pretending to read an IEP. All the salesperson needed to do was ask if there was anything else. The call would be ended, and silence would prevail once more. I waited.
"Yeah. Can I get some breasts and thighs to go with that, please?"
I admit that I turned and stared at Paulette, too surprised to pretend any longer. She was smiling at me, not fooled for one second. Apparently the salesperson on the other line was shocked as well; it took her a moment to respond in the negative.
"Oh well, it was worth a try. You have a good day."
Paulette hung up the phone and we had a good laugh about it. Then I made her tell me all about her upcoming trip. We did not get any work done for the rest of the day, and that was just fine with us.
What funny things have you overheard?