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put the bee on (someone)
To ask or pressure someone for a loan or donation of money. Primarily heard in US. Jane's good-for-nothing brother always comes around our place every couple of weeks to put the bee on us for a few bucks. The alumni association of my old university puts the bee on me once or twice a year looking for a donation.
A woman who has authority or is in a dominant or favored position over her peers. An allusion to the (typically) lone egg-laying female of a bee colony. Martha fancies herself a queen bee after her promotion, but she's only an assistant supervisor. You'll have to ask the queen bee before you put through any more orders on the company card.
be (as) busy as a bee
To be very busy. I'm currently choreographing three plays, so I'm as busy as a bee. Can we meet next week instead? I'm busy as a bee right now.
a bee in (one's) bonnet
An obsession, often with something that is strange or a source of agitation. Ever since the blizzard last year, dad has had a bee in his bonnet about moving to a warmer climate. It seems that Mike still has a bee in his bonnet over the criticism he got in the staff meeting.
the bee's knees
dated slang Something or someone highly enjoyable, desirable, or impressive, especially in a fancy or elaborate way. Tom's new Cadillac is really the bee's knees! Boy, that singer last night was the bee's knees, wasn't she?
be the bee's knees
To be exceptionally great, excellent, or high-quality. Have you ever tried the pistachio gelato at this place? It's absolutely the bee's knees! I'm so crazy about the girl I've started seeing. I think she's the bee's knees, and I don't care who knows it!
have a bee in (one's) bonnet
To talk incessantly about something one thinks is important (often in spite of others' disinterest). Ever since the blizzard last year, Dad has had a bee in his bonnet about moving to a warmer climate It seems that Mike still has a bee in his bonnet over the criticism he got in the staff meeting.
the birds and the bees
Lessons about sex, such as are typically taught to children or young adults. My mom talked to me about the birds and the bees this morning—it was so mortifying!
(as) busy as a bee
Very busy. I'm currently choreographing three plays, so I'm as busy as a bee. Can we meet next week instead? I'm busy as a bee right now.
One who is very active, industrious, or busy. I'm currently choreographing three plays, so I'm a real busy bee. Can we meet next week instead? I'm a busy bee right now.
make like a bee and buzz off
humorous slang To depart or leave, especially at once or in a hurry. This carnival turned out to be really boring. Come on, let's make like a bee and buzz off! You know, you're starting to get on my nerves—why don't you make like a bee and buzz off!
put a bee in (one's) bonnet
1. To give one a suggestion of or idea about something that one should do, especially something that one becomes very interested in or obsessed with as a result. Someone put a bee in my bonnet that I should really advertise aggressively on social media, so I've been trying to bolster that side of the business lately. MY father put a bee in his Harry's bonnet last week about growing his own vegetables, and he's been out digging up a garden for them ever since.
2. To cause one to be extremely aggravated, irritated, or angry (about something). You look upset—what's put a bee in your bonnet? It really puts a bee in my bonnet when you undermine me like that in front of the kids.
bee in one's bonnet
a single idea or a thought that remains in one's mind; an obsession. (*Typically: get ~; have ~; give one ~.) I have a bee in my bonnet over that cool new car I saw, and I can't stop thinking about it. I got a bee in my bonnet about swimming. I just wanted to go swimming all the time.
the birds and the bees
Euph. sex and reproduction. (See also .) My father tried to teach me about the birds and the bees. He's twenty years old and doesn't understand about the birds and the bees!
*busy as a beaver (building a new dam)and *busy as a bee; *busy as a one-armed paperhanger; *busy as Grand Central Station; *busy as a cat on a hot tin roof; *busy as a fish peddler in Lent; *busy as a cranberry merchant (at Thanksgiving); *busy as popcorn on a skillet
very busy. (*Also: as ~.) My boss keeps me as busy as a one-armed paperhanger. I don't have time to talk to you. I'm as busy as a beaver. When the tourist season starts, this store is busy as Grand Central Station. Sorry I can't go to lunch with you. I'm as busy as a beaver building a new dam. Prying into other folks' business kept him busy as popcorn on a skillet.
put a bee in someone's bonnet (about someone or something)
Fig. to give someone an idea about someone or something; to urge someone to do something. Julie put a bee in my bonnet about a way to solve our money problems. Sam put a bee in my bonnet about having a party for Jane. He put a bee in my bonnet about Jane. I'm glad he put a bee in my bonnet.
bee in one's bonnet
A strange idea or notion; also, an idea that is harped on, an obsession. For example, Bill's got a bee in his bonnet about burglars; he's always imagining strange noises. This term, which replaced the earlier have bees in one's head, transfers the buzzing of a bee inside one's hat to a weird idea in one's head. [Second half of 1600s]
birds and the bees, the
A euphemism for sex education, especially when taught informally. For example, It's time Father told the children about the birds and the bees. Cole Porter alluded to this expression in his witty song, "Let's Do It, Let's Fall in Love," (1928) when he noted that birds, bees, even educated fleas fall in love. This idiom alludes to sexual behavior in animals to avoid explicit explanation of human behavior. [Second half of 1800s]
busy as a beaver
Also, busy as a bee. Hardworking, very industrious, as in With all her activities, Sue is always busy as a bee, or Bob's busy as a beaver trying to finish painting before it rains. The comparison to beavers dates from the late 1700s, the variant from the late 1300s. Also see eager beaver; work like a beaver.
the bee's kneesBRITISH, OLD-FASHIONED
If something or someone is the bee's knees, they are extremely good. I loved this jacket when I bought it — I thought it was the bee's knees. Note: Some people believe that this expression refers to the way in which bees transfer pollen (= the powder that flowers make) from their bodies to pollen sacs on their back legs. However, it seems more likely that it dates from the 1920s, when other similar expressions such as `the cat's pyjamas' began to be used.
have a bee in your bonnet
If you have a bee in your bonnet about a subject, you feel very strongly about it and keep talking about it. Daley has a bee in her bonnet about the state of popular music. There was no arguing with the boy when he'd got a bee in his bonnet. Note: This expression suggests that you think the subject that a person keeps talking about is not important. The expression is considered old-fashioned in American English. Note: Two images are suggested by this expression. The first is of thoughts moving around inside someone's head like bees. The second is of someone who has a bee trapped in their hat and is anxious to get it out before they are stung.
a busy bee
If you describe someone as a busy bee, you mean that they enjoy doing a lot of things and always keep themselves busy. `I enjoyed being a busy bee, getting things done,' she said in her confident way. Note: You can also say that someone is as busy as a bee. He is busy as a bee designing every production in London.
the birds and the bees
If you tell a child about the birds and the bees, you explain to them about sex and sexual reproduction. At the age of 16 I remember having yet another discussion about the birds and the bees with my father. Note: This expression is often used humorously. Note: People sometimes explain sex and sexual reproduction to children by telling them how animals reproduce.
the bee's kneessomething or someone outstandingly good. informal
The bee's knees was first used to refer to something small and insignificant, but it quickly developed its current, completely opposite meaning.
have a bee in your bonnethave an obsessive preoccupation with something. informal
This expression, along with have bees in the head or bees in the brain , was first used to refer to someone who was regarded as crazy or eccentric.
the birds and the beesbasic facts about sex and reproduction as told to a child. informal
as busy as a beevery busy or industrious.
busy beean industrious person
the ˌbee’s ˈknees(informal) a wonderful person or thing: He thinks he’s the bee’s knees (= has a high opinion of himself).
have a ˈbee in your bonnet(informal) think or talk about something all the time and believe that it is very important: Harry’s always going around opening windows. He’s got a bee in his bonnet about fresh air.
A bonnet is a hat tied with strings under the chin, worn by babies and, especially in the past, by women.
the birds and the ˈbees(old-fashioned or humorous) the basic facts about sex and reproduction, the ‘facts of life’, as told to children: Now that Jamie is eleven, isn’t it time you told him about the birds and the bees?
(as) busy as a ˈbeevery busy
a ˌbusy ˈbee(informal) a cheerful and busy person
a bee in (one's) bonnet
1. An impulse to do something; a notion.
2. An obsession.
bee in one's bonnet, to have a
To have a strange fixation about something; to have an eccentric idea or fantasy. A version of the term appears in Robert Herrick’s “Mad Maid’s Song” (ca. 1648): “. . . the bee which bore my love away, I’ll seek him in your bonnet brave.” Allegedly the expression stems from the analogy of a bee buzzing inside one’s hat to a peculiar idea in one’s head. It has been a cliché since the eighteenth century. Lest one think it is obsolete, it appeared in a 2004 murder mystery: “By the way, what bee got into your bonnet at the meeting? Bailey had been pretty cooperative” (David Baldacci, Hour Game).
busy as a beaver/bee
Extremely industrious. The proverbial comparison to bees dates from Chaucer’s time. The one to beavers is newer, going back only to the seventeenth century; it also is put as works like a beaver and eager beaver. Among more recent proverbial comparisons for being busy, which liken it more to nervous overactivity than ambitiousness, is busy as a one-armed paperhanger, an Americanism dating from about 1910.
Something that's excellent. This nonsensical phrase that was popular in the 1920s was, like “the cat's whiskers,” the equivalent of today's “really cool” or “it's amazing!” It went the way of such faddish expressions, which is to say, out.