fine kettle of fish

fine kettle of fish

A difficult or awkward situation; a mess. Primarily heard in US. Well, that's a fine kettle of fish. I thought I paid the credit card bill, but it turns out that I missed the due date by a week.
See also: fine, fish, kettle, of

fine kettle of fish

Fig. a troublesome situation; a vexing problem. (Usually appears in the expression, This is a fine kettle of fish!) This is a fine kettle of fish. My husband is not here to meet me at the train station, and there's no phone here for me to call him. Alan: Oh, no! I've burned the roast. We don't have anything to serve our guests as a main dish. Jane: But they'll be here any minute! This is a fine kettle of fish.
See also: fine, fish, kettle, of
References in periodicals archive ?
So what are you going to do about that fine kettle of fish, Tony Blair?
Open a can of worms and you may wind up in a fine kettle of fish.
Oral testimonies from a variety of sources on all sides of the arguments make Ross's section on maintaining LOOT's sexual orthodoxy very interesting and accessible, and she makes good use of them to show that the feminist movement was sometimes "a fine kettle of fish.