Have you ever been in a restaurant and noticed the conversations going on at other tables? I don’t mean exactly eavesdropping but just overhearing because maybe you’re not having a conversation and the other people are talking loudly. What interesting things other people talk about!

When we ate at Mustard’s Grill in Yountville a while ago there was a table of landscapers sitting next to us. They talked about pesticides opining that a product called “Common Sense Pest Control” was the best to use. Then they went on to talk about gophers. It was their feeling that your gophers get to know you. And the gophers can tell who is in the garden by the sound of their footfalls. Interesting.

The best conversation I ever overheard was years ago in Boston at a little restaurant called The English Room. Lots of students ate there because you got a starter, main course, two vegetable selections and dessert for $3.00. When I say years ago, I am talking about around 1970. Well, anyway, the tables were really packed in and it was extremely difficult not to hear what the people at the next table were talking about. This one day we were sitting next to a couple and they were discussing the purchase of a bed. But apparently they were part of a ménage a trois and they were debating the merits of different size beds that the three of them could fit in. Interesting.

Maybe I should start bringing a list of topics to talk about when we go out to eat so I won’t be tempted to listen to other peoples’ conversations. Or, more fun, maybe I’ll make up outrageous stuff and give the next table an earful.

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