skin someone alive

skin someone alive

1. If someone is able to skin you alive, they are much stronger or more powerful than you and may harm you. They are fiercely competitive. If they can skin us alive in business, they will. Anyone who reads your finance pages will see that shareholders in some major banks have been skinned alive.
2. If someone threatens to skin you alive, they are threatening to punish you severely. Who let the dog out? You catch that animal, Ernie, or you'll get skinned alive.
See also: alive, skin