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We can’t put the genie back in the box

Discussing politics is not always a good idea, unless you blurt out a malaphor.  One of my major malaphor contributors, Yvonne Stam, was discussing social policy with her husband and uttered this great mixed idiom.  It is a mash up of “can’t put the genie back in the bottle”  (not being able to revert to a situation formerly existing) and “opening Pandora’s box” (doing something that causes a lot of unexpected problems).  As Yvonne notes, both involve mythical creatures that cause trouble.  Also, closing Pandora’s box has a similar meaning to putting the genie back in the bottle.  Both are impossible.  I also think the mix up is caused by the containers themselves – putting things in boxes and bottles.   Finally, back rhymes with jack so it is possible Yvonne was also conjuring up an image of a jack-in-the-box.  Who knows?  Bottom line is it is a terrific malaphor, and kudos again to Yvonne Stam for sending this one in!

Did this malaphor give you a chuckle?  If so, my book “He Smokes Like a Fish and other Malaphors” will have you chuckling for days.  You can find it on Amazon in book or kindle at http://www.amazon.com/dp/0692652205.

genie in a box

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3 Comments on “We can’t put the genie back in the box”

  1. Sam Edelmann says:

    Not a malaphor, but a great word. Manufactory

  2. WAKSHUL says:

    ​Oh yeah?

  3. ACIV says:

    The world is your lobster.


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