If there is company over into the evening, excuse yourself at last from the conversation and behave as though you’re preparing yourself for bed. Brush your teeth, wash your face, change into your pajamas. After awhile, wander back into the sitting room, rubbing your eyes, to tell everybody good evening another time. Walk forthwith to your bedroom and close the door firmly, switching off the hallway lights as you exit. Then, very quietly, open the door to your bedroom and come back out. Take a seat at the top of the stairs, or on a chair in a nearby room, or on the floor by the door to the sitting room. Listen to the conversation from that distance. Put your head down against your knees. Listen halfway.