Lat week I stumbled upon yet another podcast that I've been binge-listening to as time allows. It is called Strictly Anonymous with host Kathy K. The premise of the show is, people with a story to tell (usually something sexual in nature) are interviewed anonymously so they can be free to tell the story openly and honestly.
So far I've heard about a guy who banged his step-mom (which was actually really good); a guy who has been involved in a variety of sexual taboos since a young age (not sure I believed all his stuff); a girl who came on the show under the auspices of having a sugar daddy but in reality, she has a boyfriend who is old enough to be her grandfather. But, the one I'm talking about now is a guy who accidentally became a peeping Tom. It is episode 132 dated June 27, 2016.
This guy, Tom (of course, what other nickname would they use), lives in an apartment complex that has a doggy walking area. It just so happens that when he takes his little pooch out at the crack of dawn each morning, he walks past the window of a guy sleeping in the nude. Every morning, naked, sometimes with a boner, sometimes flaccid, sometimes with his ass facing the window, sometimes in a fetal position, but always asleep.
The conversation quickly moves from the excitement of this man (happens to be gay) seeing a sleeping guy in the buff and how exciting that is to the social norms of privacy, nudity, sharing of pictures, exhibitionism, and the difference of Reality TV and real voyeurism. All this to tell you I enjoyed that particular episode, though I was frustrated at times because the host could not seem to grasp that there is a difference between the voyeuristic interest in people unaware that they are being observed, and nudity. And also, it reminded me about the time a guy let me borrow his radio scanner.
So this is back in the early 1990's before everyone including 10 year-olds had smart phones. This was also a time when people still had land-lines and we didn't know to encrypt the baby monitor in our houses. Oh the good old days when you could go to Radio Shack and buy stuff.
This guy ate work let me use his scanner that when set to the 900 Mhz band would scan for anything in the vicinity that was broadcasting on that frequency. I remember as soon as I fired it up out in the garage, I picked up my wife on a phone call with her sister. Clear as day, I listened to their entire conversation. Just family gossip as I recall. That conversation got me hooked and I recall spending several hours scanning around picking up the neighbor's baby monitor and phone calls.
I ended up setting the device on a scan mode that allowed it to find a conversation, then when that conversation ended, would automatically start scanning again for the next viable signal. And then I connected the output to a recorder and let it go. I'd come back later, fast forward through the tape until I found something and move on if it was boring. I did this for several weeks before the guy at work demanded to have his scanner back.
It is amazing what you hear when people don't realize you are listening. And for a voyeur like me, this is fascinating. This is exactly the difference between a Reality TV show where not only do the players know they are on camera, but if you believe what insiders say, most that shit is scripted. A peeping Tom on the other hand sees true reality. It isn't exciting because you see the person naked. It is exciting because they don't know that you see them naked. The guy on this podcast was trying to explain this to the host and she was having a tough time making the distinction.
Through listening to a neighbor have a conversation with his adult aged son, I learned a valuable life-long lesson and advice that I have offered others many times over. I only knew these people well enough to wave hello, yet, I gained so much from that private conversation. The man died years ago, but his fatherly advice has stayed with me.
In another case, a juicier tidbit occurred. I listened to a police officer tell his wife he had to stay and finish paperwork on an arrest and then immediately click-over to call waiting and tell his girlfriend he'd meet her in a few minutes.
In a call I taped, I listened to a city councilman talking with some official conspiring to screw over a local businessman who was not cooperating with whatever plan they had. They talked about rezoning his street and basically surrounding his business with bars and strip clubs. I guess this is really how things get done. I really agonized over that tape. I had thoughts of turning it over to the newspaper, or turning it over to some sort of law enforcement, but the problem was, based on the job I did for the military, I knew all well that I was just as bad for listening to these conversations and recording them.
I've never been the guy that peers into windows and takes pictures of women in a shower, but I have certainly been a voyeur almost all of my life.