Posted by R. Berg on October 03, 2003
In Reply to: Get a wriggle on posted by Lewis on October 03, 2003
: : To tell someone to get a wriggle on is to tell them to get a move on, hurry up, etc. But why wriggle? How can that speed things up? Anyone know how this started?
: to 'wriggle' is to squirm or to make progress forward by deviating from the straight course by going left and right in succession. for example if somebody was caving and crawling through a confined space "getting a wriggle on" would get them through quicker.
: Also the human bottom "wiggles" when walking quickly - somebody could quite properly say "get a wiggle on" meaning to go from normal walking pace to something faster.
: Either makes sense.
: there is another good word for wriggling - and that is "jink" - it is often used of attacking football players dodging and twisting their way through tackles - it may be Scottish in origin - my team (Woking FC) used to have a player nick-named "jinky" (Scott Steele) who was a Scot by origin as well as by name.
"Get a wiggle on" is, or used to be, a common U.S. version. In fact, I haven't heard "wriggle" used in the phrase. I think "wiggle" is used there simply to signify movement or activity of any kind.