have better fish to fry

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have better fish to fry

To have more important or more interesting things to do or attend to. It's really not worth my time. I've got better fish to fry! I want Chris to help me with this project, but he claims he has better fish to fry right now.
See also: better, fish, fry, have, to
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

fish to fry, to have better/bigger/other

To have other, more important matters to attend to. Referring to fish cookery, this term dates from the seventeenth century. “I fear he has other fish to fry,” wrote John Evelyn in his Memoirs (1660). Actually, this term also appeared in an early translation of Rabelais’s Pantagruel (1552) by Motteux, but it did not seem to catch on until later.
See also: better, big, fish, have, other, to
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer