kettle of fish

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kettle of fish

1. Also, a fine or pretty kettle of fish . An unpleasant or messy predicament, as in They haven't spoken in years, and they're assigned to adjoining seats-that's a fine kettle of fish . This term alludes to the Scottish riverside picnic called kettle of fish, where freshly caught salmon were boiled and eaten out of hand. [Early 1700s]
2. a different or another kettle of fish . A very different matter or issue, not necessarily a bad one. For example, They're paying for the meal? That's a different kettle of fish. [First half of 1900s]
See also: fish, kettle, of
References in classic literature ?
In order to eliminate the reference to our perceptions, which introduces an irrelevant psychological suggestion, I will take a different illustration, namely, stellar photography.
Just as a photographic plate receives a different impression of a cluster of stars when a telescope is part of the intervening medium, so a brain receives a different impression when an eye and an optic nerve are part of the intervening medium.
A republic, by which I mean a government in which the scheme of representation takes place, opens a different prospect, and promises the cure for which we are seeking.
Follow our layout to make this eye-catching throw, or refer to the design options on page 17 for a different look.
Royal Troon, the venue for next year's Open, bullishly argue that they are a different case.
He wakes up every morning in a different person's body and he has no idea why.
But it's especially hard for A, who wakes up in a different body every day.
We finished the first half strong, and now we're a different team and trying to figure everybody out and how to best win with this team.
As a high school coach trying to fit an offensive philosophy into a different level of talent, I was struck by the thought that there were elements in both philosophies we might employ in the high school game.
The IRS said it would continue to study the disappearing-basis issue and would particularly welcome comments on whether a different approach is warranted for corporations filing consolidated returns.
This glove is so different, a lot bigger and with a different shape.
Gensler also developed new office workplace standards that include "universal" workstations that take advantage of wireless technology, and a different mix of meeting spaces, including many more "private rooms" that let people take their conversations out of hearing range of the shared workspace.
If Company A's competitor got "special treatment" on its importations through a different region, Company A was comparatively disadvantaged.
During this period the couple relocated to a different neighborhood, sold House 1 and purchased a replacement residence (House 2).
With support from York, Penton's Contracting Business and HVACR Distribution Business produced the award-winning series, which featured 12 one-hour webcasts focused on a different topic designed to give contractors the confidence and skills to successfully "up sell" home comfort systems.