It doesn't go away like the mumps

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Senior Member

A high school director is having an argument with the English teacher because
the magazine with student's works is a bit disappointing and he wants to close it.
The director says to him that he is not the one he used to be when he was a published author.
The English teacher reacts immediately to that by saying,
"I'm still a published author.
It doesn't go away like the mumps."

To what he is referring with "it"?
What doesn't go away like mumps? The fact that he is still a published author, his fame maybe..?
Movie "Words and Pictures".

Thank you
  • suzi br

    Senior Member
    English / England
    I think you are right to think of something like fame as well as the fact of it. I think there is a hint of pride there, he believes thar whatever status or credibility he has as a published writer does not fade.


    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    The thing is that fame and status can be lost over time, but the fact that he is a published author, even if it was a long time ago and nobody remembers him, does not change and is important to his self-image.
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