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I feel resentful, especially since it's the man who bring in the money; and even if Bill were the school principal, he wouldn't come close.

● Read more here: I found this via Glenn Sacks. (June 17, 2008 Family secrets: I wish I had married for money, not love.)

I searched for Come Close and this is the result:

Definition of come close

1 : to almost do something We didn't win, but we came close. —often + to The band came very close to breaking up.We came close to winning the championship this season.

2 : to be similar to something or as good as expected She said they taste just like real hot dogs, but they don't even come close (to the real thing).

But there's still a little nagging doubt at the back of my mind. I wonder if it means:

  1. "Bill wouldn't earn nearly as much money as her friend's husband; even if he became head teacher & got the job."

    or

  2. "Bill will never come close to get promotion."

2

You have left over a relevant part of the text

Carol is having a champagne party for her 40th, as well as a week in Paris with her husband and a weekend in New York with their 14-year-old daughter. I pretended to be thrilled, but was sick with envy. I know many people can't take a holiday at all, but we mix with people who have no mortgages, work part time or not at all, can afford private education and have three or four holidays a year.

I feel resentful, especially as it's the men who bring in the money; and even if Bill were a head teacher, he wouldn't come close.

Here we can observe what is exactly the referred object.

Even if Bill were head master, his salary wouldn't come close to allow no mortagages, work part time, private education, three or four holidays a year.

Your first interpretation is correct but let me rephrase it a bit because become head teacher and get the job are practically the same thing but the order stated seems wrong. First you get the job then you became head teacher. Also Bill already got the job, it's his role that change, his salary and responsibilities.

Bill wouldn't earn nearly as much money as her friend's husband; even if he got a new role and became head teacher

  • I think "got the promotion" is a suitable alternative to "got a new role". What's your opinion? – AmirhoseinRiazi Aug 31 '18 at 9:16
  • @AmirhoseinRiazi I think that you're right. It's better "got the promotion" – RubioRic Aug 31 '18 at 10:21
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You have misquoted it a bit, the full quote reads:

I feel resentful, especially as it's the men who bring in the money; and even if Bill were a head teacher, he wouldn't come close.

I believe your first interpretation is correct. Even if Bill got promoted to a head teacher, he wouldn't come close to bringing in the big money.

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