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January 22, 2014

The Origin of the Expression "Open a Can of Worms"


Fisherman in the 1950s used to buy sealed metal cans of earthworms, as opposed to the plastic containers or Styrofoam cups of today.
After arriving at their fishing spot, they would set the metal can down and open it. What was inside was alive and if the top was left open for too long or the can was tipped over, well, your biggest problem would no longer be catching fish. It would be catching your bait that’s wriggling away. Today I Found Out

Posted by gerardvanderleun at January 22, 2014 11:04 AM. This is an entry on the sideblog of American Digest: Check it out.

Your Say

Shouldn't that can replace Pajama Boy on the Healthcare.gov ads?

Posted by: Don Rodrigo at January 22, 2014 11:45 AM

So this means by extension that in 2008 and 2012, low-knowledge American voters opened two cans of Obamas?

Posted by: Jersey Jehu at January 22, 2014 1:36 PM

That's why I always carried my worms in a Sir Walter Raleigh tobacco can. It had a nice flip top lid, fit nicely in my pocket, and was free for the asking from my Grandpa, who smoked a pipe.

We are smarter than worms.......sometimes. I like to think of the lid on the tobacco can as analogous to common sense. Common sense dictates that we should provide solutions to our problems.

Posted by: Jimmy J. at January 22, 2014 2:33 PM

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