Whether it's going out to a restaurant or just heading down to the store to pick up some groceries, you're bound to overhear someone else's conversation. These people overheard more than what they bargained for, however, and now they're stuck with the disturbing details of what they heard.
(Content has been edited for clarity.)
It’s Sad When The Kid Has More Sense Than The Parent
“I am cashier at a grocery store.
This guy came in with two carts full of every kind of junk food you can imagine. Everything was microwavable and there wasn’t a vegetable or fruit to be seen. It was all utter crap, and $400 worth of it, too. The guy had his five children with him. The oldest was around 10 and he was helping by pushing the other cart.
They pulled into my register and started unloading. All the while, the 10-year-old boy and an 8-year-old girl were talking to their dad. They were trying to keep their voices down, but I could hear them saying, ‘Dad, this isn’t good food. We need good food, and this will be all of our money.’ The dad shushed them, told them he knew what he was doing, and it was all fine.
They paid with food stamps and I could see on the computer that that was all of their money for the month, gone in one order. The 10-year-old was on the verge of tears while pushing the cart out, telling his dad that none of this would last them and now they didn’t have any more money.”
“I So Hungry, Mama…”
“I was at Kroger at about 8 p.m. one evening. I had just gotten off work and needed to get my son some medicine before heading home. While walking through the produce section, I noticed two women with five children. The women looked awful, very thin, with dirty hair and clothes, and their faces were scabbed. They definitely could have been some kind of addicts. Three of the five children they had with them did not have shoes on. Their cart was full of soda, brewskis, and pizza rolls. There was a small toddler in the seat of the cart. He was asking his mom if he could have a banana. The mom ignored him and kept talking to her friend. The boy asked again for a banana, saying, ‘Mama, I’m so hungry, I have ‘nana?’ Again, the mom ignored him.
The boy reached over and tried to grab a banana, and the mom slapped his little hand so hard, and grabbed his face and screamed, ‘YOU DON’T TOUCH THAT! THAT’S NOT FOR YOU! YOU GRAB SOMETHING AGAIN, IMMA BEAT YOU IN FRONT OF EVERYONE HERE!’ Then she shoved his head backward.
The toddler shrank down into a ball and hugged himself and whispered, ‘I so hungry, Mama.’ The mother ignored him again.
My heart started banging in my chest. That poor baby was hungry, it was 8 p.m., and you know he hadn’t had dinner yet. By the looks of his mom, he may not have eaten at all that day. That bimbo was pushing around a cart full of trash and didn’t want to spend a lousy 25 cents on a piece of fruit for her kid. I followed that woman around the entire store with my cell phone set to take a picture, waiting for her to hurt her kid again. I fantasized about grabbing the little guy and taking him home and giving him a bath, clean clothes that fit, and feeding him a hot meal. She didn’t slap him again, but I listened to her whole conversation about how she was going to drop her kids off with their ‘useless daddy’ so she and her friend could go ‘party.’
When they got up to the checkout, they were unloading their groceries when the little boy tried to help set items on the belt. The mom went nuts again, yelling at her kid, and went to grab his arm. When she noticed me holding my phone up to take a picture, she let go. She paid for her groceries with her food stamps and left. When they were out the door, the cashier looked at me with sad eyes and said, ‘I saw you following them, too bad you didn’t get that picture. Some people should not be allowed to breed.’
I did follow them outside and saw them getting on the city bus. I went back into the store to pay for my goods and asked the clerk if there was any way to look up the last customer because of the shopper’s cards they use. I did get her name and called CPS. I was told, ‘We will look into it.’ I never heard anything else.
I went home and cried as I rocked my son, thinking about that hungry little boy and wondered if he ever got dinner.”
His Mind Was Blown In Chipotle
“I was in line at Chipotle when the couple in front of me had this exchange:
Him: ‘YOU’RE PREGNANT?! WHY ON EARTH WOULD YOU TELL ME THIS NOW?!’
Her: ‘It doesn’t matter. I’m having an abortion as we speak; just took the pill. I would never have YOUR kids.’
It was brutal. Completely brutal.”
It Seemed Like The Little Boy Was The Only One Ashamed By The Mother’s Actions
“I work in a castle that holds medieval banquets, one side of which is that we give out free drinks. It’s two and a half hours long, so if you try, you’ve got enough time to get pretty wasted.
One day, the banquet was finishing, and we were saying goodbye to the guests. This one woman, she was fairly hammered. She kept knocking into the walls, knocking everything off of them. She even insulted me, my manager, and HER manager who was up visiting. Her husband was out in the smoking area outside, ignoring the situation, apart from sending their probably 8-year-old son in to try and get her out of the building. ‘C’mon Mom, time to go. Dad says we have to leave now. The castle is closing.’ I could hear in his voice that he’d seen this behavior repeatedly. His tone was pleading and sad, but resigned at the same time.
So we got her out the door, then myself and my colleagues went to change out of costume and collect our tips. Maybe five minutes later, I left by the same door and headed to the car. I saw the wife a few yards off the gravel path, butt in the air while her head was practically buried in a large patch of briars. She’d gone to look at the view of the bay then she slipped and fell into the thorns. She was covered in blood from a hundred tiny cuts. Her son was bleating like Simba trying to wake up Mufasa after the stampede. ‘C’mon Mom! You can do it, just try to stand up! I know you can Mom! Please, please, just try Mom.’ I don’t know how he held it together, there were tears in his voice, if not in his eyes.
And the dad? He was down the road at the end of the path, maybe 60 yards away, leaning on a wall, smoking without a care in the world. I walked down to him and hissed at him to go get his car and drive it to the foot of the path as his wife was incapable of walking to the carpark. He was aloof and nonchalantly sauntered off to the carpark. Two other staff members and I managed to get her upright, and I cleaned up her cuts with a medkit. She was out of her mind by this point, laughing, gurgling, and wiping her stinking blood over us. And her kid was so embarrassed, ashamed and very nearly crying. God, I was simultaneously so sad and angry driving home after work that night.”
They Didn’t Even Have Enough For That Small, Sad Meal
“I was in line at Taco Bell, and I was irritated at how long this woman and her kid were taking until I found out what was going on. She was counting pennies. The kid said, ‘It’s okay, Mom, we don’t need the [food items],’ and I swear I thought I was on the set of a live Charles Dickens story. You could see they didn’t have much, the mom looked malnourished, and both of them were skinny.
I went up to the counter and said, ‘No, how much us it? It’s a holiday gift from your neighbor.’ The lady tried to refuse but I said no. I paid the amount and she thanked me. It didn’t make me really feel much better. All I could think about was, ‘What are they going to do for breakfast?’
Really puts one’s pettier problems into perspective.”
“You Know I Know, Right”
“I was a server and had a couple come in. They seemed happy. He said, ‘Order whatever you want,’ and made sure she had a drink and got dessert. Then he gave me his card ahead of time and said he wanted to pay for it all. It was all incredibly sweet.
As she was finishing up dessert, I walked by and I heard him say, ‘So…you know I know, right?’ My ears perked up. He continued, ‘You have to know that I know. Haha, I mean, I’m not stupid.’
‘What are you talking about, babe?’
‘Of all the people. Of all the people! Haha! Him? That’s just…Eye opening. I’m sorry you felt like you weren’t getting enough from me.’ The whole time, he spoke with a pretty friendly, matter-of-fact tone.
I was bussing and cleaning tables around them and got the gist that she lived with him and he bought her a car, but now he’s taking it back and needs her to move out, though he will give her time. Then he waved me over, left a huge tip, kissed her on the cheek, and left her sitting there.
She sat there staring at the table for about an hour before picking up her phone and calling someone.
That was the most epic, heart-wrenching, well played break up I’ve ever seen.”
Her Threats Just Proved That Their Break Up Was A Good Thing
“My wife and I were enjoying an otherwise fantastic dinner at a really nice restaurant. Seated in the booth behind us was another married couple (an older, nerdy type guy and a very pretty, much younger woman) that were in the throes of separation/divorce.
In an angry whisper, the wife made a list of material demands such as a pool, new car, and a beach house. The consequence for him not delivering on her wants was: ‘I’ll bang every friend you’ve got, and I know a lot of other freaky people on top of that.’
He sheepishly replied, ‘No, that’s not necessary. I’ll start working on it Monday.’
Another time, my wife and I were enjoying an ice cream at a Baskin-Robbins on a beautiful Saturday in the spring.
Seated at a table next to ours was a man and a little boy who looked to be 4-6 years old. The child asked, ‘Daddy, why didn’t Mom want to come with us today, and why don’t you live in our house anymore?’ Hearing that made my wife instantly weep and our barely eaten ice cream went in the trash as we exited the store.”
He Was Bragging About What He’d Done As If He Was Proud Of It
“I was in my college dining hall with five or six of my friends. A boy at the table next to us started bragging about something. We couldn’t hear very well. He was clearly an upperclassman, over 21, so while we thought it could have been a party, it wasn’t likely, so we started to eavesdrop. Little by little, we began getting angrier and angrier. He was bragging about how he adopted this kitten, then tortured it to death. His buddy was filming it all on his phone. This guy was just going on and on about what he did to this poor animal. One of my buddies was a huge cat lover, and we basically had to restrain him.
Reports were filed, and the phone was seized. One nice twist to the story though is that the cat torturer was caught, as was the owner of the phone. The cameraman had also taken phone videos of himself doping and assaulting girls at a local bar, so two criminals were caught.”
She’d Made Up Her Mind A Long Time Ago And There Was Nothing He Could Do To Stop It
“I was waiting tables at a Mexican restaurant when a woman came in and said she was waiting for her husband. She ordered a drink for herself, told me what he’d want when he got there, then went ahead and ordered food for both of them so they could eat right when he arrived. I thought she was getting stood up at first, but she didn’t seem to care. She ordered herself another drink and was looking at some paperwork in a big manila envelope when I brought it to her.
Her husband showed up not too long after that, so I brought him the drink she ordered for him and told them the food would be out in a minute. When I came back with the food, she handed him the manila envelope as I put the plates on the table. He instantly burst into tears and started yelling, asking her why. She (very cooly, while I was still there) told him she never loved him and that she wanted a divorce. Their table was right by the waiter station, so even when I left, I could see and hear everything. My manager got mad that I hadn’t walked by to ask if they liked their food, so I was forced to go over and ask them while she was calmly telling how she wanted to split everything. He was still sobbing.
She went ahead and gave me her card to pay. I brought it back and she tipped me (very well). Then she stood up to leave. At this point, the man fell to the floor and held her legs, begging her not to leave. I was still standing right there. She told him to ‘be a man about it and have some dignity.’ Then she left. He sat at the table for about another hour, never touching the food or drink. When he left, he apologized to me and gave me a $100 bill.”
There Was No Need For Him To Speak So Cruelly To His Wife
“My kid played baseball last spring, and while most of the parents were pretty low-key, there was one dad who was kind of obnoxious. He had been some type of highly ranked D3 athlete with a huge ego and was living vicariously through his 5-year-old. My heart broke when he berated his kid for crying after he got out and told him how embarrassing it was that his kid was the only one crying. Pretty messed up.
So somehow this absolute jerk of a guy also had this super cute wife which was really confusing because he was never particularly nice to her either. I mean, she had a tiny bit of baby weight left, but still, she was an absolutely gorgeous woman.
So fast forward to the last game of the year. The coaches threw this mini party and got all the kids Italian Ice. There was a ton, so they offered it to the parents too. I happened to be standing behind this couple. She got her kid his Italian Ice and got one for herself, too. When she sat down beside her husband, he whispered to her, ‘I think it’s pretty obvious you don’t need those calories.’
Not cool, dude.”
Even If He Were To Reveal What He’d Heard, Who Would He Tell?
“I work in a restaurant in Brazil, and I overheard four guys talking about kidnapping someone. They were dead serious. I overheard them through a thin wall. The worst part? They were cops. They still come to eat here from time to time and are notoriously dirty. One of them has a half million car while getting less than $2,000 a month. I never did anything about it. Who would I call? The other dirty cops?”
She Interrogated Them One By One
“My husband and I were at McDonald’s. We took our son to the Playplace to try to let him burn off energy so we could finish grocery shopping.
A mother was in there with her three kids. One by one, she would make each one of them sit down and was interrogating them. ‘Where did your dad sit at the spring concert? Who did he sit by? Did he sit with Mason’s mom? Did he talk to any of the other moms? Was he laughing and smiling when he talked to Carter’s mom? Did you guys come right home afterwards?’
She was writing it all down. Each child was not allowed to go play unless they answered her questions.”
They Should Have Saved That Conversation For A More Private Moment
“I was a bouncer for five years and got scheduled for some time behind the bar when it was slow. That way I could make it a couple hours early for my bouncer shift. I was doing the levels and dumping the cooler into the front fridges when I heard two women at the bar casually talking. Of course, since I was stuck there, I quietly listened in.
Female A: ‘So he was pretty good in bed. We even had a joint afterward and cuddled. It was awesome! I just feel so bad that I didn’t tell him. I mean, he seemed OK with it and said he would call.’
Female B: ‘Well, that’s kind of a jerk move, don’t you think? I mean, I have told guys when I am on my period before, well, before anything got too far. I hope he calls, but you should just be happy he didn’t kill you.’
Female A: ‘Well it looked like he had murdered someone when we turned the lights on. It was everywhere. I didn’t think I was having a heavy day at all. You should have seen the handprints on the wall, one was on this poster he had up for ‘A Clockwork Orange!””
Her Daughter’s Innocent Question Clearly Touched A Nerve
“In high school, I worked at a grocery store and had to work in dairy for a day, which meant I was filling shelves from behind in a large ice box all day. People couldn’t see me.
I heard this child chattering, and I was passively listening. She then asked, ‘Mommy, when is Daddy coming home?’
The mother hesitated and said, ‘We talked about this already.’ The girl got really quiet.
I like to believe he was on a trip.”
His “Friends” Were Trying To Lead Him Down The Wrong Path
“There were three middle-aged guys sitting at a table beside me in a cafe. This was in Hong Kong and these men were not local.
Two of the men were trying to persuade the last into getting it on with a lady for the night. The reason they had to persuade him was because he didn’t want to cheat on his wife. So they kept saying, ‘She wouldn’t know. You’re on a holiday! She wouldn’t know, and we’ll keep it a secret! Come on, we’ll pay for one for you.’
Jerks. I don’t even know what he was doing with those two knuckleheads.”
He Was Just Shy, But The Others At His Job Thought Otherwise
“As a 14-year-old, super-shy busboy at a restaurant in my hometown, I was terrified of the early-20s waitresses. One night, as I was setting up a banquet and the waitresses were chatting in the kitchen with the door open, I overheard the following: ‘What do you think of that new kid, the busboy? Is he mentally challenged or something?’
‘Aw, he’s cute. I think maybe he’s just slow?’
It took a few years to get over that one.”