cook someone's goose
cook (one's) goose
To interfere with, disrupt, or ruin something for someone. News of my involvement in this scandal will cook my goose for sure.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.
cook someone's goose
Ruin someone, upset someone's plans. For example, He thinks he'll get away with stealing my idea, but I'm going to cook his goose. The origin of this phrase has been lost, but there are numerous fanciful theories; one concerns a besieged town that displayed a goose to show it had enough food, causing the attackers to set it on fire. The first recorded use of this colloquial phrase was in 1851.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer. Copyright © 2003, 1997 by The Christine Ammer 1992 Trust. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
cook someone's goosespoil someone's plans; cause someone's downfall. informal
The underlying idea of this phrase seems to be that a goose was cherished and fattened up for a special occasion, and therefore to cook it prematurely meant to spoil the plans for a feast.
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
cook someone's goose, to
To ruin someone’s undertaking or plan. There are numerous colorful theories about the origin of this term. According to one, the inhabitants of a besieged town in the sixteenth century hung out a goose to show their attackers they were not starving; the enraged enemies then set fire to the town and thus cooked the goose. According to another, the term comes from the fable about the goose that laid golden eggs, which, when the farmer killed it to obtain the gold inside, left him with nothing but a goose to cook. The earliest written records of the term date from the mid-nineteenth century, one being in a street ballad opposing the Pope’s appointment of a particular cardinal (“If they’ll come here we’ll cook their goose, the Pope and Cardinal Wiseman,” 1851).
See also: cook
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer