# "The calls from Harvard hovered with our potential right around zero"

I saw the sentence in The Adderall Diaries (2015) (a line shown on screen, not part of the dialogue):

The calls from Harvard hovered with our potential right around zero.

I don't understand what does this sentence mean, particularly what does it mean by 'hover with our potential'? By considering the context, I guess this sentence is to say 'We have no chance to get into Harvard'. I searched the dictionary and I didn't find a proper meaning of 'hover' for this sentence.

• The line is "The calls from Harvard hovered at our potential, which was right around zero" Commented Jun 30, 2016 at 4:23
• @CowperKettle I think 'calls' in this sentence means 'phone calls'. Then what does it mean by 'phone calls fly/float at one's potential'?
– Hua
Commented Jun 30, 2016 at 4:26

The line is

The calls from Harvard hovered at our potential, which was right around zero

This means that the amount of calls from Harvard hovered at the some level on an imaginary graph. What level? The same level as the level of their potential, which was right around zero.

You can also imagine this "hovering" as the "hovering" of an indicator hand:

The indicator needle hovers at the zero level. It goes slightly up, then goes slightly down, but generally stays in one place. Imagine that the instrument measures not the speed of a car but "calls from Harvard".

Examples of usage:

The speedometer needle hovers steadily at just over 100 miles, yet Engineman Earl Gilbert sits relaxed at the controls. (Popular Mechanics)

Mark lifts his foot off the gas pedal and the speedometer needle hovers at 55 mph as they round the bendin the road. (Google Books)

• An excellent explanation and illustration !
– Hua
Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 12:10