I saw the phrase “put somebody's pants on’ in today’s ‘Quote of the Day” of Washington Post (July 17). It quotes the following remark of DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz on Mitt Romney's record at Bain Capital in an interview Monday (July 16) morning:
You know, this is a campaign for president of the United States. Mitt Romney is running for president of the United States, and he and his campaign leadership need to put their big boy and big girl pants on and defend his record.
No English online dictionaries of Cambridge, Oxford and Merriam-Webster carries ‘put one's pants on.’ Google Ngram registers ‘put one's pants on” neither.
I found an example of ‘Put Pants’ in the heading of the following text in Google:
“Put pants on before you "hangout" with President Obama on Google+ Google+, impervious to the teasing of tech-bloggers, marches on. Now with more than 90 million users, they just picked up a rather prominent one.”
I don't know what the writer is talking about.
Although the word, ‘put one's pants on’ doesn’t seem to me a word of very good taste, nor worth adding to my repertory, what does it mean? Does it mean to ‘behave in disciplined manner’?
Is it a well-received English phrase as used publicly by DNC Chair, and specifically quoted in Washington Post?