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a can of worms

a can of worms

Date: Feb 07 2008

Themes: Pop Culture

引語

1. Quote - Listen to the quote and guess what the slang means.

“It’s a can of worms. Big, fat, juicy worms, but worms.”

- Actress Pamela Anderson on her third divorce. (US Magazine)

定義

1. 定義 - Study the definition.

a bad situation; a problem with an unknown outcome

2. 用法 - Learn how the slang is used.

A can of worms is a big problem or something that could create a big problem. In America, there are no canned worms (at least, not at the grocery store, anyway). But, people open cans of worms all the time. That is to say, they make problems.

Pamela Anderson’s divorce is a can of worms, not only because divorces are always big problems, but also because she does not want to talk about it and she doesn’t want others to discuss it either. If there’s a topic you don’t want people to talk about, you could call it a can of worms.

Do you know what else comes in a linguistic can? Whoopass. When people say, “Don’t make me open a can of whoopass on you,” they mean “Don’t make me fight with you.” Whoopass comes from the verb, to whoop ass, which means to fight.

Do any slang terms come in a can in your language? What do you think English speakers should start canning next?

範例

1. Examples - Hear some example sentences.

“He opened a can of worms today.”

“Let’s not talk about that. Don’t go opening a can of worms.”

猜對了

1. Winners - See who guessed the slang definition correctly.

yuen88yuen something is so hard to deal with..like the worms in the can...
作者 yuen88yuen
a lot of big trouble
作者 chelsea1905
Panduola a source of unpredictable trouble and complexity
作者 Panduola
something really unpleasant, disgusting even
作者 if_i_refuse
siouxie She was refering to her failed marriage that made her life in haywire.
作者 siouxie
dearpesar a big broblem you dont want to talk about
作者 dearpesar
doom i think can of worms means : a very problematic situation
作者 doom
ElBeam It is something disgusting and unpleasing.
作者 ElBeam
Darlene difficult matters to deal with
作者 Darlene
jacob-iz It's a complicated or embarrassing matter.
作者 jacob-iz
donnadonna it`s kind of similar to what we call in my country "Pndora`s box"...one may expect the situation to be sorted out after "opening the can full of surprises"; instead, there`s nothing but grossy worms, so that they come to add even more problems to the already complicated situation..."high quality worms" they may be, indeed, as Pamela humourously refers to them as "big, fat , juicy", but it`s nothing but a literary method to help her emphasise the dramatic situation she is in.By that she simply means "it`s getting even worse"
作者 donnadonna
Droomek A complex unexpected problem or unsolvable dilemma
作者 Droomek
homyhoo the troublesome problem,unsolved problem
作者 homyhoo
trustmeok complicated problem
作者 trustmeok
Situation which is troublesome and complex with problems and she hate to talk about it.
作者 kaushalyats

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意見

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primula

primula

Saudi Arabia

nice slang Sealed

A can of worms is a big problem or something that could create a big problem

03:16 AM Jul 29 2010 |

dia_nna29

dia_nna29

Malaysia

eeeee…this slang doesnt sound good.. but i would still practice it !

04:43 PM Jan 21 2010 |

benyamin14

benyamin14

Iran, Islamic Republic Of

hard situation with a lot of problems

06:29 PM Dec 26 2009 |

SENHY

SENHY

China

I don't talk about my feelings, Don't touch my can of worms.

09:01 AM Nov 24 2009 |

Colibri

Colibri

Russian Federation

thanks, good lesson, will definitely use it. In Russian, actually, there is something similar but more darker like "let's not open coffin cover (when you don't want to speak about something from your life experience). 

06:20 PM Oct 23 2009 |

lilmaro'

Egypt

i still can’t get it :s

09:05 PM Feb 13 2008 |

shinasia

shinasia

Oman

woo0o0ow i have alot of worm can at class coz of some topics.
heheheh
thank u

07:41 AM Feb 13 2008 |

sravanjampani

India

good one, shall start using it”can of worms”

05:52 AM Feb 13 2008 |

alexzhang61

China

a can of worms,got it.

04:32 AM Feb 13 2008 |

anvinme

anvinme

China

just now I readed these two Ameican slang. in my opinion, a can of worms means not to talk with someone who don’t like something.

11:57 AM Feb 12 2008 |

Dekler

Dekler

Kazakhstan

in russian we call it:
don’t do from fly to elephant!

06:51 AM Feb 12 2008 |

jerry_z

jerry_z

China

Don’t make me open a can of whoopass on you! haha
I think a see what it’s mean

02:29 PM Feb 09 2008 |

daniomoreira

Brazil

I think that is similar to what we call in Brazil “to step on jackfruit” or “put foot on jackfruit”. This mean, create a big problem or go in a big problem…

02:15 PM Feb 09 2008 |

nono_cute

nono_cute

Iraq

lol so good , let’s open a can of worms!

03:55 PM Feb 08 2008 |

sheeda

sheeda

Serbia and Montenegro

very usefull word ,there are some pepole got a can of worm to our life ,they try to make us a can of whoopass,

10:28 PM Feb 07 2008 |

tear_drop

tear_drop

Poland

do you really use that in America ? I think it came from Pandora box from the Greek mythology, that makes a sense.

10:22 PM Feb 07 2008 |

wac

France

Bonsoir slang cava? wech l7ob mazyan hhhhhh je t aime my name is khalid c mon msn holako_10@hotmail.fr ViVE moi ViVE Afrika ViVE L7ob = lf you Amis bye bye .

02:58 PM Feb 07 2008 |

qinglong23

qinglong23

China

it’s good.

02:53 PM Feb 07 2008 |

anda.a1

Netherlands

It could be a dificult discussion we try to avoid or something intriguing but offensive in the same time that we don’t want to feel but”life is life” ; so it happens sometimes that we open a can of worms.Something disgusting especilly when people talk about their ex-lovers,ex-husbands or ex-wifes as Pamela does.Nobody would like to experiense such a situation.

02:52 PM Feb 07 2008 |

riverchi

riverchi

Taiwan

Whoop!

02:43 PM Feb 07 2008 |

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