1

In the following passage from Lonely Man Full of Love by Mauro Mevlud Martino, what does "mirror in my bathroom" mean?

A: ‘’Are you quieter and lonelier than me, Rachel?’’

B: ‘’Perhaps, Martin. Perhaps. I want to be good to myself. I have a mirror in my bathroom.’’

A: ‘’I think the main character in my novel Weeping Willow Trees was you.’’

Does it literally mean that she (B) has a mirror in her bathroom? Or does it mean that she spends most of her time looking at the mirror? Or does it have a connotation that she (B) suffers from narcissism?

5
  • Why wouldn't she just mean that she can see herself? – Lambie Mar 3 at 18:03
  • 3
    I think this might be opinion-based, or belong to the Literature SE, but I think maybe "I have a mirror in my bathroom" means "I do not want to live in a way that makes me look bad or unhappy, because I will see it in the mirror which I have in my bathroom". – Michael Harvey Mar 3 at 18:14
  • @MichaelHarvey this makes more sense. – Aseel Mar 3 at 18:19
  • We can use plain statements to explain something. I don't visit casinos or strip clubs. I have a wife and children. – Michael Harvey Mar 3 at 18:34
  • 1
    I agree with @MichaelHarvey. The sentence's plain meaning is that she has a mirror in her bathroom so she can take care of herself. There's no need to go further afield here. – FeliniusRex Mar 3 at 19:00
0

My simplest interpretation is that Rachel mentions the mirror as providing a literal second person that she can meet, because that is being 'good to myself' compared to her previous experiences with real people; "...if I feel lonely I can alway talk with my reflection". This seems a tragic-comedy, sarcastic expression overall, perhaps ironically hiding an appeal to Martin to help her try a relationship again. I also feel that this mirror-idiom is so bleak that it emphasises the degree of loneliness that she really feels.

2
  • This actually gives more sense to the context. If I need to translate it is it preferred to keep it literally or not. If not how can you paraphrase it to deliver the meaning intended? – Aseel Mar 3 at 18:54
  • In the target language, I'd think how (or if) I'd tell a potential partner that I was lonely but shy of new relationships, but that because my current coping methods weren't really satisfactory I could be available... I'd start by doing it literally, then I'd think about idioms, humor, street slang, then refine this to match the context of the target writing project. – OookLout Mar 4 at 19:55

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.