Skin the bunny

I always assumed every one grew up knowing about skinning the bunny – but apparently that’s not so.

You see when the weather starts cooling down, Chicken Little has to be clothed before she goes for a walk. It could be a raincoat or a polo neck jumper or maybe even just her rebel t-shirt, it all depends on the day. Trouble is, when she gets back home she won’t let you take it off without attacking, it’s because they all try to do it the wrong way; they try to lift each leg out and fuss about with it when the best way to do it is to just grab the tail end of the damn thing and rip it off.

I said to my husband tonight

You need to skin the bunny.

He just looks at me blankly so I say

Haven’t you ever skinned the bunny?

And he said – no I have not ever skinned a bunny – (slightly horrified) being the city boy that he is.

And I said – didn’t your mother ever say – skin the bunny? But he was still mystified so I thought maybe it was just a country thing.

When I was little, if I ever had a troublesome jumper or top that was giving me grief when I was trying to get it off my mother or father would say – skin the bunny – and I knew it meant to put your arms straight up in the air and they’d grab the bottom and just pull it right up and off.

Because basically that’s the way you skin a bunny.

I have to say though, that over the years I did sustain some nasty injuries to my nose from buttons or zippers that hadn’t been undone as they zoomed by.


14 thoughts on “Skin the bunny

  1. My husband always says “skin the rabbit”. I had never heard it. Not sure if that comes so show from the Danish side of his family or from growing up in Texas.

  2. I haven’t heard of this term either, but I had to laugh a little at the context in which you use it. As a little girl I watched my uncle skin a rabbit he had shot, and it was appallingly much like taking a pullover sweater (jumper to you) off of a child.

    I also remember getting nicked or poked by a stray button or zipper when my parents yanked off my sweaters. I still have a tiny scar on my nose from when it got hooked onto a zipper!

    • That’s what I say – her wardrobe is more extensive than mine. We only put something on her if it’s cold or raining when she goes out in winter, lol, we don’t dress her up in frilly dresses and underpants.

  3. Yep, my Tasmanian-born parents used it all the time but I’ve never heard anyone else say it! I had no idea what you were talking about to start with either, they always said “skin the rabbit” and yup, arms straight up and pull your head back away from the buttons and zips.

    • I always said it to my kids when I was taking a skivvy off them (my youngest used to like to leave it sitting around the top of her forehead and pretend the sleeves were ponytails). It was always bunny in our house I think.

  4. I heard it growing up in New Brunswick, Canada. It meant the same as you said, to pull the clothing up over the head and usually inside out. I used it all the time with my kids. I am living in Southern California now, and have a 2 month old grandson. Just this past weekend, I was changing his clothes, and said “time to skin the bunny”, and his mother, a California native, looked at me, absolutely aghast, and said “What did you say?” Fortunately, my son was there to confirm that this was a common saying where we came from 😀

  5. I grew up with this phrase I’m 52. I always said it to my kids never thinking….then My grandson….I said Skin the bunny….All of a sudden a light bulb went on and realized what I was saying!! maybe from city to suburbia to a farm made me realize?! But still wonder were the phrase came from and yes, it meant you put your arms up and the shirt or clothes came up over your head. My Grandparents half from OS but some here in the states. My father did grow up having home raised rabbit dinners on Sundays in the 50 ‘s and 60’s. Still what is the origin of the statement?

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