overtones of potato chips: "Lolita" (Nabokov)

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az09

Senior Member
Chinese
Please help me to understand the meaning of <<-->> "overtones of potato chips" << --- second question deleted --- >> in the following sentence from Chapter 32 of Nabokov's Lolita.

The bed was a frightful mess with overtones of potato chips. She tried on a two-piece navy wool, then a sleeveless blouse with a swirly clathrate skirt, but the first was too tight and the second too ample, and when I begged her to hurry up (the situation was beginning to frighten me), Lo viciously sent those nice presents of mine hurtling into a corner, and put on yesterday’s dress.

Thank you so much!
 
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  • Cenzontle

    Senior Member
    English, U.S.
    One definition of "overtone", in my dictionary, is a "quality of subtle or elusive character".
    I associate it with the way in which people talk about wine, when they discern subtle flavors.
    Meanwhile, there is nothing subtle about potato chips spilled in a bed. So Nabokov is having an ironic joke.
    << --- second answer deleted --- >>
     
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    az09

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    One definition of "overtone", in my dictionary, is a "quality of subtle or elusive character".
    I associate it with the way in which people talk about wine, when they discern subtle flavors.
    Meanwhile, there is nothing subtle about potato chips spilled in a bed. So Nabokov is having an ironic joke.
    << --- second answer deleted --- >>
    Thank you!
     
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