Does this mean something? I'm not trying to be smecher or obraznic -- it's just that in english this doesn't really mean anything. Does it mean... you keep reading the book?
you stay here to keep an eye on the book (haven't you watch harry potter?) :P
Have you graduated some college or university? Me too, but my friend didn't, he opened a shop and started making money. I work hard for my money, and make less than him. When we meet, he always tells me ”tu rămâi cu cartea”.. Well this story is not true, but the expression is largely used with this meaning in Romanian, by snobbish people or ironically, in satires, to show the futility of study, or the futility of doing things legally - some people study all their life and never make enough money, other people barely know to read and write, but they know how to make money... Today ”carte” means ”book” or ”postcard” - carte poștală, or generally, ”studies” or ”knowledge” - but it had other meanings in the past, it could be a legal property letter, tenure, that proved the ownership of the land, usually issued by a local ruler to soldiers who fought in the war, etc. The expression ”cine are carte are parte” (how the hack should I translate this? help!) originated hundreds of years ago when the land was shared between the peasants and those who had ”cartea domnească” (the tenure from the ruler) could get the land. Later, the same expression changed the meaning to something like ”the one who studies more has more chances in life” or so. Nowadays, someone ”are carte” has the meaning ”has knowledge”, ”studies” etc.
Imagine you argue with your neighbor for some silly issue, his hen jumped over the fence and ate your lettuce, or whatever, and you both go to the court. You have all documents that show that you are right, but your neighbor is a good friend of the judge - common, look to the Romanian politics.. And the judge orders you to pay the lettuce and the hen even if it was your neighbor who ate the chicken soup after the fight that let you with a purple eye (you didn't know your neighbor was a black belt :P)... You pay the money and are left with the papers (that show you were right)... ”Tu rămâi cu cartea”... or ”cu dreptatea”. More recently, we say ”mori cu dreptatea în mână”... (sorry for the dissertation, one o'clock in the night here, my eyes fell into my mouth and I am looking out to the monitor through the space between the teeth ...)
Very interesting! Thank you! Seems like "cartea" is metonymy for "education", right? "You stuck with your books, while I moved on to make some serious money in computers."
Exactly, you summarized it perfectly. ("education" was the word I was looking for and could not find at 1AM in the night, hehe)
Well, it's a bit weird without a context. I think "you're left with the book"/"you get the book" would be clearer.