Picture this: you’re sitting in your home, maybe enjoying a good book or relaxing to music, when your sibling comes up to you excitedly and says “guess what!”. Though you’re interested in what they might have to say, you know that you can catch them off guard and instead of responding to them with “what?”, you say “chicken butt.” Laughter abounds, or just rolling eyes, but either way, you’ve surprised them with your quick thinking.
If you’ve never heard of “Guess What? Chicken Butt!”, then this scenario might not make a lot of sense to you. If this is the case, follow along with this article and get answers to the meaning, the origins, and the correct usage of the expression “guess what, chicken butt.”
The Meaning of “Guess what Chicken Butt”
This expression typically comes in two parts. One person will say “guess what” and the other will catch them off guard by saying “chicken butt.”
There really isn’t any specific meaning behind this phrase, it is instead simply meant as a non sequitur, meant to throw people off and maybe make them laugh, but mostly it’s to make yourself laugh.
Sometimes this expression will be used all by one person. First you’ll tell someone “guess what”, they’ll respond with “what?” and you’ll say “chicken butt.”
It’s almost like a harmless prank, simply wasting someone’s time without saying or doing anything actually rude or dangerous. However, I can’t stress enough how there really isn’t any deeper meaning of the expression “guess what, chicken butt.”
It’s mostly used by children, or childish people, and is most popular on the school grounds or in a home with little kids – no one finds the idea of a chicken’s butt funnier than people under 10.
Another way that this phrase can be used is as one full sentence. “Guess what, chicken butt” could be a way to engage someone in a conversation whilst playfully calling them a name that isn’t really derogatory, like something you might call a sibling if you want to tease them a little.
Examples of“Guess what Chicken Butt”
Kid One: Hey! Guess what!
Kid Two: Chicken butt.
Kid One: Nooo!
Kid Three: Hey, guess what!
Kid Four: What?
Kid Three: Chicken butt.
Kid Four: I’ve been tricked!
Sibling 1: Guess what, chicken butt.
Sibling 2: Don’t call me that.
Other Ways to Say “Guess What Chicken Butt”
Depending on the way that you’re using the phrase, there are a couple other ways that you could say the same thing. For example, I’ve heard some people say “Guess what” “Snot”, though this is probably a UK phrase.
If you’re trying to waste someone’s time with something harmless, you could also say “guess what.” “What?” “Nothing.”
Or if the phrase is being used in one sentence to playfully tease someone, you could instead say “what’s up, chicken butt”, which is fun because it kind of rhymes, or even “guess what, dummy” though this last one is a little mean.
When Not To Use The Phrase
It should be noted that this phrase is entirely colloquial, and should really only be used in causal settings among friends or family. You won’t get fired or reprimanded for using it in a professional setting (probably), but your manager will probably think you’re unprofessional or childish.
It should be safe to use with the older members of your family, and the kids will probably like it, however there will probably be millennials or zoomers that have never even encountered the phrase before.
Origins of “Guess What Chicken Butt”
Here’s something wild: This phrase can be traced back to the 14th century. The undesirable cuts of meat would get chucked into barrels, also known as butts. Though the word butt was originally used to describe the barrel (borrowed from the French language) it eventually ended up referring to the contents more than the container.
This evolved into calling the scrap parts of the meat as the “butts”, which, during times of economic crisis, would be the only food that a lot of families could afford. “Chicken Butt” doesn’t actually refer to poultry posterior, but to the undesirable and cheaper cuts of meat that come from a chicken.
There are also experts who believe that the phrase’s popularity came from a very popular opera named “Porgy and Bess”, in which a character discusses something to do with chicken butts.
It’s fun to imagine the idea that this silly little childish phrase could have been launched into popular culture by something as highbrow as an opera, so I hope that it’s true.