to upset the applecart

Idiom Definition

Idiom Definition - upset the applecart

"to upset the applecart"

to spoil a plan, arrangement or expected course of events


Related words and phrases:

Idiom Scenario 1

Idiom Definition - upset the applecart

Two colleagues are talking ...

Colleague 1:  Why is the boss so upset with me?

Colleague 2:  After thirty years in the same position always doing things the same way, if you propose radical sweeping changes, even though they will be effective and boost profit, the boss is going to react.

Colleague 1:  I suppose I am proposing to upset the applecart a little.

Colleague 2:  Definitely a change to the status quo.

Idiom Scenario 2

Idiom Definition - upset the applecart

Two friends are talking ...

Friend 1:  All the plans are in place for our trip this weekend. I have rented a camper van that sleeps four. All the provisions are bought and packed and ready. Everyone is ready to go Friday after work.

Friend 2:  My girlfriend just told me that she wants to go with us.

Friend 1:  That upsets the applecart. There is only room for four in the camper.

Friend 2:  No problem. My girlfriend and I will pack our own gear and follow in our car.

to upset the applecart - Usage:


Usage Frequency Index:   245   click for frequency by country

to upset the applecart - Gerund Form:

Upsetting the applecart of your wife's beautifully made plans for a romantic getaway is not wise.

to upset the applecart - Examples:

1)  ... and all eyes will be on it to see if it can upset the applecart of the two major national parties.

2)  those who enter the charmed circle of federal politics know not to upset the applecart. And what does "within the rules" mean anyway? 

3)  They were frustrated and angry and demanded change and they were determined to upset the applecart.

4)  But there's no doubt it has upset the applecart because he courts controversy in a way others haven't here.

5)  As anticipated, the global Internet and technology conglomerate has upset the applecart for current players at the top end of the TV industry. 

6)  ... but consolidating their position as a team that can upset the applecart is key to Leicester's long-term success. 

7)  Donald Trump, despite his approach, has upset the applecart by achieving what many did not expect and securing the Republican nomination in the presidential ...

8)  ... and that you've got the chance to upset the applecart and have the bragging rights.

9)  Both parties are looking for fun but don't want to upset the applecart at home. They can have an affair with little risk of getting caught.

10)  ... the last thing they need is something or someone who is going to upset the applecart and play a negative impact on the collective positive vibe.

11)  For example, Uber has upset the applecart in the personal transport sector and Airbnb is rapidly reshaping the hospitality industry.

12)  ... to clamour for the world's attention; to upset the applecart of bourgeois conformity. His life amounted to a series of flamboyant gestures.

13)  ... two companies historically never really competed aggressively on retail prices until Cell C upset the applecart a few years ago. 

14)  But a historian has now threatened to upset the applecart by claiming to have found proof the traditional pasty was actually invented elsewhere.

15)  people to 'throw a spanner in the works' and to 'upset the applecart'. Well they would certainly do that. It is a recipe for chaos.

16)  Even Pieter Kruger at one under could still upset the applecart if he goes low in the next two rounds.

17)  ... has the ability to sway voters away from them and thus upset the applecart.

18)  They feel threatened and are constantly looking to do something that can upset the applecart.

19)  Also cuts in brand margins by manufacturers have completely upset the applecart.

20)  ... country may just be thrown into another round of violent agitation that might upset the applecart once more.