woodshed

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something nasty in the woodshed

Something illicit, immoral, illegal, or scandalous that is kept secret or hidden away from public sight. A line taken from Stella Gibbon's 1933 novel Cold Comfort Farm, in which a character discusses "something nasty in the woodshed" she witnessed as a child. Primarily heard in UK. With multiple reports of abuse coming to light, it certainly seems there is something nasty in the woodshed at the hospice care center. While the film initially presents him as a kindly old man, it begins hinting that there's something nasty in the woodshed lurking behind his benevolent demeanor.

take (one) behind the woodshed

To punish, reprimand, or reprove someone, especially discreetly, secretly, or in private. Many suspect that the president took the former aide behind the woodshed over his inflammatory remarks to the press.
See also: behind, take, woodshed

take (one) to the woodshed

To punish, reprimand, or reprove someone, especially discreetly, secretly, or in private. Many suspect that the president took the former aide to the woodshed over his inflammatory remarks to the press.
See also: take, woodshed

something nasty in the woodshed

a shocking or distasteful thing kept secret. British informal
This expression is taken from Stella Gibbons 's comic novel Cold Comfort Farm ( 1933 ), in which Aunt Ada Doom's dominance over her family is maintained by constant references to her having seen something nasty in the woodshed in her youth. The details of the experience are never explained.

take someone to the woodshed

reprove or punish someone, especially discreetly. US informal, dated
This expression referred to the former practice of taking a naughty child to a woodshed to be punished, out of sight of other people.
See also: someone, take, woodshed

take (someone) to the woodshed

To reprimand or punish (someone).
See also: take, woodshed

trip to the woodshed

An instance of being reprimanded or punished.
See also: trip, woodshed
References in periodicals archive ?
Jerry McCay's shtick is a little different from woodshedding.
Bird's horn screams again as music, dance, lights, and props provide hints of the horrors of woodshedding.
Bigger: When I was woodshedding, I lived in a basement.