What was said? I have a bone to pick with my accountant…
Did someone really say that? Yes, this one is brought to you by my husband – his first submission! Someone in his office said that to him the other day and he immediately thought of me.
What does it mean? It basically means there is a topic/issue that requires discussion/argument. The speaker of the idiom believes there will be a disagreement and that the other party has done him/her “wrong.”
Origin: Fortunately (or unfortunately) this one seems fairly straightforward. It dates back to the 1500’s and refers to a dog chewing on (picking clean) a bone.
A similar phrase to “a bone to pick” is “bone of contention” which dates back to the same time frame and refers to a bone being fought over by two dogs.
Mark Bittman wrote a book titled “A Bone to Pick” about the good & bad news (and ins and outs) of the food industry.