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pants off, the

This phrase is used to intensify the meaning of verbs such asbore or charm or kid or scare or talk. For example, That speech bored the pants off us, or It was a real tornado and scared the pants off me. Playwright Eugene O'Neill used it in Ah, Wilderness! (1933): “I tell you, you scared the pants off him,” and Evelyn Waugh, in A Handful of Dust (1934), had a variation, “She bores my pants off.” [ ; early 1900s ]
Also see: beat the pants off
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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