The phrase “In a Pickle” means to be in a challenging or difficult circumstance. It alludes to being as disoriented or mixed up as the vegetables that make up pickle. Originating in the 1600s, it is referenced most famously in Shakespeare’s The Tempest in 1611,
And Trinculo is reeling ripe: where should they
Find this grand liquor that hath gilded ‘em?
How camest thou in this pickle?