The Overheard Word

The Overheard Word Blog 1

Well, it’s official – this is the title of a new stream of blogging for me – it is based in the very nature of its name. Passing snippets of conversation woven into a story… for my writing, and your reading, pleasure (I hope).

Context: Heading towards me Saturday morning, a young, alternative-looking couple carrying groceries.

“How can you be so oblivious?” Yells young lady trailing young man on sidewalk.

He looks back, so I don’t know what he says.

She glares at his back, and I see this intently as I pass them, and follows up with: “There’s nothing ruder!”

They kept walking in the opposite direction to me and I was struck by so many possibilities of where this started. I looked about for context, and considered whether “ruder” is actually a word. I looked it up, it is.

A bit of context:

They had recently exited an organic food store, and were carrying groceries from said store.

They struck me as a couple.

He was walking in front of her – this could be explained by the surrounding pedestrian traffic.

She was carrying several plastic bags.
He was carrying a small box balanced on one hand.

The story that got us to here:

In formulating my completely bogus backstory to this event, I considered many factors.
I was intuitively struck by the feeling that her comment, ‘there’s nothing ruder” was targeted at him. So this has probably influenced my direction…

Here’s what I came up with:

“Actually,” he says pointedly, “there are ruder things”.

“Such as?” She says provocatively.

“People who don’t return their trolley in a car park.”

“What?” she shrieks, completely oblivious of her surroundings.

He laughs.

She does not. “You think this is funny?”

“Yep, I do now.”

“You walk around stores, like that independent organic grocer, and EAT their fresh produce, and even unwrap protein snacks, and eat them without paying for them? They know you are doing it!”

“Well if they know I’m doing it – why don’t they say something?”

“I don’t mean… Oh my god you’re so frustrating, do you want to be caught? They know people do it because they do stocktakes. They know how much they bought of something, and how much they sold, and what the amount is that is missing.”

“They can afford it. Prices they charge”.

“Oh my god you’re such an idiot! They have to factor those losses into their price structure, so we are actually paying for it. Do you not know anything?”

“Whatever,” he says, “I know heaps about how to work the system.”

She glares.

What happened later?

She asks: “What else do you know about working the system?”

“Heaps. Heaps of crap in fact.”


“Meaning, I refuse to poop scoop at the park. It is an open space. I lean down with a bag and pretend I’m scooping, and just pick up some leaves.”

“You have been walking our dog for three years and you’ve never poop scooped! What is wrong with you? Our dog poo is probably the dog poo I stood on in the park, like everyday!”

“Well why’d you stand in it?”

She rounds on him fiercely. “What?”

Long term:

I feel like they didn’t make it as a couple, but the reality of the situation is that they probably did stay together.

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