life between brackets

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flamenquita

Senior Member
Czech Republic, Czech
Hello native speakers, could you please explain the meaning of the phrase "life between brackets" in the following sentence: "It's like we learn to live with patience, between brackets." I am afraid that it has been not spoken by a native speaker so I wonder if it´s common to use this expression... The text preceding this sentence described the hardship of a family that had to wait for years to get some furniture they ordered from abroad...
Many thanks!
 
  • Joobs

    Banned
    Glasgow, Scotland - English
    Hello native speakers, could you please explain the meaning of the phrase "life between brackets" in the following sentence: "It's like we learn to live with patience, between brackets." I am afraid that it has been not spoken by a native speaker so I wonder if it´s common to use this expression... The text preceding this sentence described the hardship of a family that had to wait for years to get some furniture they ordered from abroad...
    Many thanks!
    I doubt it is common, I certainly haven't heard it before. Given that, from reading the text I can only assume it means that they feel that they have been living a restricted life, sometimes ignored. I would imagine the "brackets" is a metaphor alluding to the use of such in writing (the bit inside can be ignored if you want to do so because the sentence still makes sense).
     

    flamenquita

    Senior Member
    Czech Republic, Czech
    Your explanation makes sense - I think they really feel as if they lived not fully, as if they lived a life full of restrictions... I just wanted to know it it´s a common expression and how it´s understood by native speakers... Many thanks :)
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    It's neither common nor is it easily understandable.

    Joobs explanation makes sense; my interpretation was that "between brackets" referred to people who don't live as the majority do, but who fall between categories, rather than falling neatly into a more popular lifestyle.
     
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