Posted by Al on March 26, 2005
In Reply to: Can it posted by Smokey Stover on March 26, 2005
: : : can anybody shed some light?
: : : another phrase I grew up with (can it)and still use
: : : that means to stop what you are doing,
: : : be finished,
: : : quit,
: : : cease and desist,
: : : Generally used to halt annoying, useless,or bad behavior.
: : : I believe it originated in hollywood
: : : when a film was finished it went into the can (film canister)
: : : ie, when they were done editing they 'caned it'
: : : it also has seen use as a term
: : : to throw something away
: : : as in the 'garbage can'
: : : (cast off the bad behavior/action and adopt new)
: : : which reminds me...
: : : how did the garbage can get to be called 'file thirteen' ?
: : In our locale many people "can" fruits and vegetables for later consumption after the growing and the harvest. I have used "can it" in a dismissive way when talking with someone and not really having the time to listen to all they have to say.
: : Also, when we are recording songs and stories in the studio and have a work in progress but not yet completed, we say it is "in the can."
: : Film, movies, are stored in cans or cannisters.
: : The "can" is also another name for the toilet.
: In my neighborhood "can it!" did not mean stop what you are doing, it mean "Shut up!" SS
In the rural US where I grew up many people preserved stuff by "canning" in "fruit jars". Fine quality fruit was often eaten fresh or traded at the country store while bruised or misshapen fruit was "canned". If a farmer had a tree of poor quality fruit one might suggest "can it". This may have contributed to the "shut up" meaning of the expression.