We’re busted at the gills

This gem was heard on episode 600 of Property Brothers.  One of the clients, describing the tight quarters, said that when they have friends over “we’re busted at the gills”.  This is a congruent conflation of “packed (or full) to the gills”  and “bursting at the seams”, both meaning to be extremely full or crowded with no room to spare.  “Busted” is commonly misused for the word “bursted”, as in the song from Carousel, “June is busting out all over” (June wasn’t the name of the heroine, right?).   A big thanks to the eagle eared prolific malaphor contributor Yvonne Stam for hearing this one and sending it in!

prop brothers


2 Comments on “We’re busted at the gills”

  1. I m referring to the anecdote regarding the very old Broadway tune “June is Busting Out All Over”, which is from the show Carousel, not Oklahoma.

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