i hear mine older coworkers usage this idiom/phrase occasionally. It seems maybe to it is in a humorous way to obtain out the a conversation. Even as a native stillproud.org speaker, I"ve never determined the exact situation you would usage this phrase. It nearly sounds choose it may have actually once to be a punchline come a hoax in a movie or something.

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I"m curious what is the exact meaning/usage the this phrase/idiom? wherein does the originate?



Wikipedia actually has an article specialized to this phrase. That says:

The earliest shown publication is the 1866 Dion Boucicault play Flying Scud in i m sorry a personality knowingly breezes previous a an overwhelming situation saying, "Excuse me Mr. Quail, ns can"t stop; I"ve obtained to see a man about a dog." In a listing for a 1939 renewal on the NBC Radio regimen America"s shed Plays, Time magazine observed the the phrase is the play"s "claim come fame".

Wiktionary adds:

The most usual variation is come "see a man about a horse". Almost any noun can be substituted together a method of offering the hearer a hint about one"s function in departing. The inversion to "see a dog about a man" eliminates any kind of lingering uncertainty around whether the hearer is being put off. A much shorter variant is come "see a man".

As come the exact instance in which girlfriend would use this phrase, that suggests:

Used as an excuse for leaving without giving the actual reason (especially if the reason is to go to the toilet, or to have actually a drink)

Back come Wikipedia again,

During prohibition in the united States, the phrase was most typically used in relation to the consumption or acquisition of alcoholic beverages.

World wide Words has extr info:

This has actually been a beneficial (and usefully vague) excuse because that absenting oneself from agency for about 150 years, despite the real reason for slipping away has not constantly been the same. <...> From various other references at the time there were 3 possibilities: 1) needed to visit the loo <...> 2) he was in urgent require of a restorative drink, presumed alcoholic; or 3) he had actually a likewise urgent should visit his mistress.

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Of these factors <...> the second became the most typical sense during the prohibition period. Now that society’s conventions have shifted to the allude where nobody of these reasons need reason much remark, the utility of the expression is significantly diminished and it is most often used in a facetious sense, if at all.