I've searched the web and found only definitions and paltry speculation as to the origin of this scolding phrase. How did it get put together this illogical way? Are there tacet words in the phrase that, if said, would make it seem more logical, such as
If I've told you once, I [might as well] have told you a thousand times [for all the good it did].
Where does this phrase originate, and how did it end up getting phrased that way?