This is a mash up of “”can of worms” and “spill the beans”. Of course, by itself it could be meant literally as opening a can of beans, but in the context the speaker meant to say “I’ve opened up a can of worms”. This malaphor is similar to a previous malaphor post – “That’s a real ball of worms” (12/18/12), mixing “can of worms” with “ball of wax”. Thanks to Denita for sending this one in!
This strange expression is a mash up of “cat out of the bag” and “spill the beans”, both meaning to give away a secret or surprise. The speaker may also have been thinking of bean bags. Who didn’t have a bean bag chair adorning their living room in the 70s and 80s? Mine was a beautiful pukish brown with a corduroy cover – stylish. Thanks to Cathy Miller for this one!