What does the expression "white whale" mean? As in, "She was my white whale."?

Question:Someone was speaking of an old girlfriend, using that expression.




Answers:
Its a reference to Moby Dick. The main character in Moby Dick chased the white whale (Moby Dick) for a realllly long time and never caught him.

So to say that something is your white whale, is to say that its something you chase and chase and chase and become obsessed with, but in the end, you never get it.
This is a reference to the whale in Moby Dick, it was Captain Ahab's obsession
Tho I don't find being compared to a whale very flattering
It's "THE ONE THAT GOT AWAY...."

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