I came across the words, ‘anything in a skirt” in the following sentence of Jeffery Archer’s “The Fourth Estate”:- Page 202.
“(Captain Armstrong is entitled to a car and driver) if the brigadier wants his daughter’s photo on the front page of Der Telegraph when she visits Berlin next month.” “Why should he want that?” said Armstrong. “My bet is that he can’t get her married off him in England.” said Sally. “And I’ve discovered, anything in a skirt is jumped on over here.”
As I was unfamiliar with the word, ‘anything in a skirt” I consulted Cambridge, Oxford, and Merriam Webster English Dictionary. None of them carries this word. However, with the example of the usage of this word on Google search, I was easily able to guess what it means:
My husband is a flirt and sleeps with anything in skirt! He sleeps with girls; women and I have been embarrassed by his frequent affairs with my maids. -
Google Ngram shows that this phrase started to be in use around 1915, and its usage started to sharply rise in 1990s.
Can I use “anything in a skirt“ as a plain alternative to “female” in conversation, particularly with women? Does it have any derogatory nuance or obscene tone, or just is as neutral as ‘women’?
It’s intriguing that the author let a young lady utter this phrase.