Eavesdropping – By @LaskarisPhillip

By Phillip Laskaris




I’m not perfect. I know, I know. It’s surprising. I surprise myself every time I admit that. I have a few bad habits and throughout this year I’m sure I’ll expand on a few others. Today I would like to talk to you about my eavesdropping. I love it. I guess it’s not so much a bad habit as it is a guilty pleasure. I know it’s wrong, I know I shouldn’t listen to strangers talk, but I can’t help it. The chance to hear thirty seconds or so of gossip regarding people that I have never met is what makes bus and train rides bearable. 

When it comes to friends or acquaintances I avoid eavesdropping. For some reason I just have no regard for a stranger’s privacy. I don’t stop at listening to people talk either. I will read someone’s texts too. I’ll even put my headphones in without any music and start to bob my head, just so people feel safe to talk a little louder. And I’ll be listening in like a peeping tom. It’s so incredibly fascinating hearing about these people’s lives. And not knowing them makes it all the better. As I said, I won’t listen in or read my friends conversations. That’s too much for me. When I know the people involved it takes the fun out of the whole bit. The fact that they’re strangers is what makes it fun. I can put their whole lives into my imagination and decide what they’re doing, where they work, who they love, based on a couple facts that I pick up.

One of my favorite characters was a man in a full Gucci suit, sunglasses to shoes, talking on the phone. He says into the phone “be quick, my phone is about to die.” Right when he says that he takes another phone out of his pocket and starts texting on that. I can’t help but wonder what he does. Why does he need two phones and if he really needed to talk to that person couldn’t he just call them on his other phone? I once watched a man write out a scathing message to his sister, copy the message, post it into another chat, and then change all the “you”s to “she”s. He got scared and wimped out of sending it to his sister. Instead he sent it to someone name Eric. I don’t know their relation, perhaps he’s a brother? He must be close to the family because my man was comfortable talking shit about the family to him.

The all time best though was when I saw someone writing a message about the person that was sitting right next to her. Apparently, the girl writing the message, we’ll call her Lisa, was furious at the woman sitting next to her. I don’t know what sparked the rage, but boy was Lisa pissed. She goes on writing this note that says things like “I hope the lord gives me strength, because this bitch is getting on my last nerve.” I’m serious. I wrote it down so I wouldn’t forget. The woman in question isn’t even talking to Lisa. She’s literally just sitting there. And then the train makes a sudden stop, Lisa is bumped by the woman. She says “Sorry” and continues looking straight and Lisa says “no problem” with a smile. Only to immediately get back on her phone and furiously types out her rage that this woman just bumped her. I nearly blew my cover when I started to laugh. 

I listen because it’s all inspiration, “dots”, if you will. These are real people and getting a glimpse into what makes them upset and what they talk about is my favorite type of research. So yes, I know I shouldn’t, but they’re strangers! They’ll never know, that is until a conversation they had pops up on TV. 

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