'The Cat's t i t s'

Posted by ESC on March 30, 2005

In Reply to: 'The Cat's t i t s' posted by arobba on March 30, 2005

: Does anyone know what it means or where the expression comes from?

: I heard it for the first time today but apparently a few people have heard it before.

I am guessing that this is a descendant of the following:

From Listening to America: An Illustrated History of Words and Phrases from Our Lively and Splendid Past by Stuart Berg Flexner:

"For 'great' (in the 20s) we have: the cat's pajamas, remarkable, first used around 1920, when pajamas were still somewhat shockingly new...similar expressions...the duck's quack, 1920; the bee's knees, the clam's garters, the elephant's wrist, the eel's ankles, the gnat's elbow, all 1923 the elephant's arches and the sardine's whiskers, both 1924; the bullfrog's beard, the cuckoo's chin, the leopard's stripes, the pig's wings, the snake's hips, and the tiger's spots, all 1925."

See: the meaning and origin of the phrase "the bee's knees".