When things go wrong or out of control, they are said to go haywire. The expression originated in America in the early 20th century and its first use was to describe something that was makeshift or poorly constructed. The expression derives from the cheap, thin, throwaway wire that was used to bind hay bales and which easily got into tangles. As early as 1905, the phrase a ‘haywire outfit’, was in use describing ill-equipped, unreliable companies using makeshift equipment. To go haywire is first recorded from the 1920s and has now become part of Standard English.