Main definitions of bum in English

: bum1bum2

bum1

Pronunciation /bəm/

See synonyms for bum

Translate bum into Spanish

noun

  • 1North American informal A vagrant.

    • ‘bums had been known to wander up to their door and ask for a sandwich’
    • ‘If you think about it, living life as a bum, hobo, or a transient is pretty extreme.’
    • ‘Twice in the past week I've heard a commercial on the local ‘Urban’ station (don't ask) imploring people not to ignore bums and beggars on the street.’
    • ‘People called bums and derelicts in the 20s and 30s had some of the best-paying, most secure jobs in industrial America by the 50s and 60s.’
    • ‘Not that I've never seen Asian bums and drunks and beggars sprawled out on the street.’
    • ‘Throughout the 1920s and 1930s, Eleanor cared for a succession of hoboes, vagabonds, and bums who called at the back door of the large house the family owned on Hamond Street in Chicago.’
    • ‘The amount of sinister looking bums and wandering pedestrians was in shorter stock here, the sidewalks mostly filled by a few meandering tourists who had gotten an early start on their shopping.’
    • ‘After the great stock market crash, all the rich gentleman were reduced to bums and hobos.’
    • ‘Even the gang members are perfect, sipping beers in their cheap, showy suits against a background teeming with transients and bums.’
    • ‘Only haggards, bums, and barflies wandered the streets this late.’
    • ‘The streets of the planet were lightly populated by a few wanderers and bums, some of them looking like they had never bathed once in their life.’
    • ‘What do a down-and-out bum and a publishing house employee have in common?’
    • ‘You're not condemned to a life of rolling down the window and asking bums for directions.’
    • ‘In response, he created Bowery Derelicts - a group of drunken bums, inspired by people he saw every day across from his apartment.’
    • ‘Abroad, the cultural influence has been vast, from The Beachcombers' Relic, to rappers, bums and crooks the world over.’
    • ‘Chuckling with maniacal glee the old bum loosened the rope that held up his voluminous, beggared trousers.’
    • ‘Film makers Ray Laticia and Ty Beeson, both recent graduates of the California film schools, have marketed the video as a chance to see ‘drunk bums beating each other silly’.’
    • ‘Often it seemed that little more than the kerchief I tied over my nose separated me from the alcohol-smelling bums with crumbs in their beards who bookended me, swooning to Albinoni.’
    • ‘Friday was spent weaving through filth encrusted bums passed-out in the gutter, as I took a therapeutic tour of some of the wicked (yet pretty pouncy) shops in the Valley.’
    • ‘He seemed frustrated and said, ‘I know I'm supposed to walk on the curb side, but in San Francisco all the bums are on the inside.’’
    • ‘For certified ski bums - or folks who want to look the part - we recommend the Primo Moc Gore-Tex by Merrell.’
    tramp, vagrant, vagabond, homeless person, derelict, down-and-out
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A lazy or worthless person.
      • ‘you ungrateful bum!’
      • ‘But he also has the whiners, loafers, jonesers, and all of the no-good lazy bums, male and female, without a work ethic opposing his every move.’
      • ‘This multi-talented filmmaker makes jacks-of-all-trades like Robert Rodriguez and Steven Soderbergh seem like lazy bums.’
      • ‘It's just the kind of inspired power-to-the-people sensibility that can rouse some good ol'-fashioned politicking - even after the fact, you lazy bums.’
      • ‘Do you think Santa flew all the way here and left these presents so you can sleep in like lazy bums?’
      • ‘So, if I had my way I'd dramatically alter the Labour Code, because the increased provision for annual leave is going to move us further along the road of breeding a lazy bunch of bums.’
      • ‘I would really like to thank each and every one of you personally, but I'm a lazy bum.’
      • ‘Much to his surprise, dad is released early on Christmas Eve, but he's still a worthless bum.’
      • ‘He knew that when he came downstairs at one o'clock his parents would call him a lazy bum and ask him how he could sleep so late.’
      • ‘It having been the winter and me having been the lazy bum that I am, it's been awhile since I shaved my legs.’
      • ‘He opened his bedroom door and we all went in, then being the lazy bums we were, we slept half the day away.’
      • ‘Im such a lazy bum and I don't spell check the chapters.’
      • ‘That I knew she wasn't the lazy bum she wanted everyone to think.’
      • ‘Although she had her own money, she wasn't going to support a lazy bum that had no job or career.’
      • ‘His family and friends disown him as a wastrel and a bum.’
      • ‘Because you are the laziest, most good-for-nothing bums, collection of bums, I've seen in a long time.’
      • ‘If you are such a lazy, dishonest bum as to disagree with that basic premise, then we are not having a conversation about political economy.’
      • ‘I make no apologies for being a lazy, unfocused bum who fritters away opportunities.’
      • ‘Anzuko laughed, ‘And Kenji grew up to be a real lazy bum who couldn't even string a bow.’’
      • ‘Buck didn't reply right away, he had always been called a loser, a misfit, or a bum.’
      idler, loafer, good-for-nothing, wastrel, drone, scrounger, ne'er-do-well, do-nothing, layabout, slob, lounger, shirker, sluggard, laggard, slugabed, malingerer
      View synonyms
  • 2North American informal in combination A person who devotes a great deal of time to a specified activity.

    • ‘a ski bum’
    • ‘a poker bum’
    • ‘There's an awkward friction between Miller, rollicking ski bum of the people, and the exclusivity of a place like the Yellowstone Club.’
    • ‘Growling in from left is Warren Miller, the puckish godfather of extreme-ski cinema and our nation's original ski bum.’
    • ‘Today, however, closer to sea level, Burt looks pretty much like every other dirtbag ski bum in the area.’
    • ‘When he left school his mother bought him an old car and he took off to the Alps to become an international ski bum - a highly talented one.’
    • ‘A former ski bum, Balint, 64, has worked on Jackson Hole's legendary patrol for nearly a quarter century.’
    • ‘Telluride icon and professional ski bum Captain Jack Carey has long symbolized the quintessential adventurer in all of us.’
    • ‘I spent some time as an over educated ski bum and I traveled a lot before I settled down.’
    • ‘And now they're still ski bums, says somebody out there.’
    • ‘Ski bums live in tents, car parks, bus stations, dog houses, whatever shelter than can find that can keep them skiing Fernie every day.’
    • ‘That, and the absence of crowds, has turned Monterosa into a cult destination for alpine ski bums.’
    • ‘Photographs taken by the Pigs on the Hill, a dedicated group of ski bums, show off the region's extreme backcountry trails and ski touring terrain.’
    • ‘It's heavy and warm, with a waterproof exterior, so it might be useful for gadget-toting ski bums, bicyclists, and hikers.’
    • ‘Serious ski bums will do anything - washing pots, cleaning toilets - if there is the promise of a free lift pass for the season in return.’
    • ‘Part of me wants to go back to Park City and be a ski bum.’
    • ‘So Laurie set out for Park City, UT, taught Spanish in an elementary school, and became a ski bum.’
    • ‘Surfer was the comically subversive tale of a group of ski bums (the Slackers) visited by a mysterious stranger who skis magically and imparts mystical knowledge.’
    • ‘I mean, my dad is in his sixties, rides motorcycles and is still a ski bum.’
    • ‘All our group of climbing bums, world travelers, and NOLS instructors had in common was lack of experience - and keen interest in backcountry mountain skiing.’

transitive verbbums, bumming, bummed

[with object]informal
  • Get by asking or begging.

    • ‘they tried to bum money off us’
    • ‘she bummed a cigarette from me’
    • ‘I bummed a ride into town with him’
    • ‘But he never stops scuffling, even when bumming a ride on the rails from Chicago to San Francisco.’
    • ‘However, within a month of bumming a ride home with Mittler Racing from a 2001 Indianapolis truck race, he was hanging around the shop, eventually being invited to turn test laps.’
    • ‘He had the nicest car of any of my friends, which was why we were always bumming rides off of him.’
    • ‘Some days I hung out with the jocks, some days I hung out with the burn-outs, and most days I hung out with no one, sort of flitting between groups, bumming a cigarette here and a ride there.’
    • ‘Early next spring, Ramsey football players are expected to start a training program which will include eating Flintstone vitamins, tee-peeing Summit Avenue and bumming cigarettes.’
    • ‘Unlike that guy who sits in front of 7-11 every day, bumming cigarettes and asking for handouts, I go to work.’
    • ‘The rock 'n' roll dream isn't only about sleeping on floors and continually bumming cigarettes.’
    • ‘There's also a terrasse, but be warned that you'll be a magnet for people bumming change.’
    • ‘She bummed a smoke off the bartender - Whitey the Roosk didn't like smoking, either - and off she went.’
    • ‘I bummed a lift up to Hornsby with Rick as a few of the SES guys were up there having a couple of quiet drinks.’
    • ‘Security cameras capture me every day crossing streets, paying for my milk, kissing my girlfriend in an elevator, bumming a cigarette from a friend outside a building.’
    • ‘‘You haven't given off such feelings in a long time, Marek,’ Iliana said, bumming a smoke.’
    • ‘But is this really the best travel deal since bumming a ride - or just a painful reminder that you get what you pay for?’
    • ‘For Christ's sake, she'd gotten engaged, to the guy that was currently bumming a cigarette off of Robin.’
    • ‘Asked what got them started, the girls both say spending time with friends who smoke and bumming an occasional cigarette.’
    • ‘I suddenly had nicotine craving though, and bummed a cigarette off Nikki.’
    • ‘We took pictures, bummed cigarettes from other people in the crowd, and waited impatiently for the band to come on.’
    • ‘Inside, Sophie says she's bummed a cigarette and we go out to the patio.’
    scrounge, beg, borrow
    View synonyms

adjective

informal attributive
  • Of poor quality; bad or wrong.

    • ‘not one bum note was played’
    • ‘It's utterly unnecessary and is the one bum note in an otherwise unusually good second outing for the characters.’
    • ‘And if you do come and see us live, sorry for the mucked up intros, the bum notes.’
    • ‘In a way it is strange to be so upset over an object, but a musical instrument is always more than just another thing, especially a well-loved guitar with a long personal history, shared bum notes and all.’
    • ‘Well we all hit bum notes, no matter how good you are.’
    • ‘Sure there's the odd glitch, bum note and flaw, but the sum makes for an extremely entertaining celebration of showbiz.’
    • ‘And play it with them, you'll be crying with laughter at every bum note!’
    • ‘The songs will stand on their merits and flaws, but I enjoyed the first listen; Warren Ellis has never played a bum note.’
    • ‘But really, the album kicks off on such a bum note that it's hard to imagine how the Rapture plan to get things back on track.’
    • ‘If the band hit a bum note, they stop and start over.’
    • ‘Alec Townsend has possibly the best voice I have heard in an unsigned act with hardly a bum note or flat harmony within earshot.’
    • ‘It was a bum note to end on but the pulsating finale should have left the fans hungry for more against Doncaster on Saturday.’
    • ‘Their vocal delivery was almost in key the whole time and there was nary a bum note squealing out of the amps.’
    • ‘The characters themselves are as solid as can be, with not one cast member hitting a bum note.’
    • ‘There are a few bum notes in this collection though.’
    • ‘Singing, playing instruments or dancing, there is not a bum note or misplaced foot from any of the actors all night.’
    • ‘Since Paul Harvey is not usually considered to be a purveyor of bum dope, I believe what he says about this balloon scheme.’
    • ‘Gee, I sure wouldn't want to be the intern responsible for that bum tip.’
    • ‘Not one bum track on this album and I was in heaven playing it.’
    • ‘The handover is the occupation with a Quisling face and no matter what we say, opposition to it will only grow when they realize what a bum deal they're getting.’
    • ‘The only thing I was thinking at the time was what a bloody bum deal I was getting.’
    bad, poor, inferior, second-rate, second-class, unsatisfactory, inadequate, unacceptable, substandard, not up to scratch, not up to par, deficient, imperfect, defective, faulty, shoddy, amateurish, careless, negligent
    View synonyms

Phrases

    get the bum's rush
    • 1informal Be forcibly ejected from a place or gathering.

      • ‘he gets the bum's rush during the audition rounds’
      1. 1.1Be abruptly dismissed for a poor idea or performance.
        • ‘the President-elect is getting the bum's rush over the economy’
    give someone the bum's rush
    • 1informal Forcibly eject someone from a place or gathering.

      • ‘the bouncer gave me the bum's rush’
      • ‘One of my colleagues tried to get an interview with Ian earlier this week but got the bum's rush: ‘Ian's too busy shooting Casualty.’’
      • ‘Absolutely, no reason for all of us to get the bum's rush.’
      1. 1.1Abruptly dismiss a poor idea or performance.
        • ‘such grand plans were rapidly given the bum's rush’
        • ‘It should come as no surprise that he got the bum's rush in short order for ‘loss of trust’, neither would it surprise anyone that the MoD went on paying him £1,000 a day for some time after his sacking.’
        • ‘I agree that Crean got the bum's rush and he would have made a decent PM.’
        • ‘New Zealand's iconic five cent coin with the tuatara looks to be getting the bum's rush!’
        • ‘No, instead, I wonder when Tubby will be given the bum's rush from the boards he sits on.’
        • ‘I'm wondering whether other conservatives agree that giving her the bum's rush for expressing her views on Michael Moore was over-the-top?’
        • ‘Are Wolfowitz and Co. going to give McKiernan the bum's rush, too?’
        • ‘Either way, it's the public who are getting the bum's rush.’
        • ‘But the six-month leave turned out to be a permanent sacking and Mrs. F. gave him the bum's rush.’
    on the bum
    North American informal
    • Traveling with rough provisions and with no fixed home; living as a vagrant.

      • ‘he continued to travel the country on the bum’
      • ‘The post-industrial label will not only appeal to Gen Xers on the bum, it also informs them this premium malt liquor was brewed for almost an entire month.’
      • ‘His boiler it was leaking, and its drivers on the bum…’

Phrasal Verbs

    bum around
    informal
    • Pass one's time idly or travel around an area with no particular purpose or destination.

      • ‘we spent most of the summer just bumming around’
      • ‘he bummed around Florida for a few months’
    bum out
    North American informal
    • bum someone out, bum out someoneMake someone feel upset or disappointed.

      • ‘I was assigned the day shift, which bummed me out’
      • ‘it really bummed me out when he forgot my birthday’

Origin

Mid 19th century probably from bummer.

Main definitions of bum in English

: bum1bum2

bum2

Pronunciation /bəm/

See synonyms for bum

Translate bum into Spanish

noun

informal British
  • A person's buttocks or anus.

    • ‘if you sit there you'll get a cold bum’
    • ‘After a couple of hours of hard work we sat in the shelter of the storage box on a bundle of wooden stakes to keep our bums from the cold wet ground, drinking lemonade and sharing a muesli bar, surveying our small slice of land.’
    • ‘My head had been cold, my bum has been cold and my feet (you've guessed it) have been cold!’
    • ‘The answer is that it is one thing to find bums for all those seats, quite another to sell the seats at profitable prices.’
    • ‘She'd hardly got her bum on the seat and she'd be away again.’
    • ‘Somehow in the process of laying back James kneed Jen in the bum and sent her rolling off the blanket and over onto the cold damp grass.’
    • ‘Audiences here are pretty unmotivated to get off their bums.’
    • ‘Although many hands go up for committee service, often for self-promotion, there are unfortunately a big number who sit on bums doing sweet nothing to promote the committee or the organisation.’
    • ‘I can see myself now, sitting in a comfy chair at the nursing home, smiling sweetly at the male attendants… pinching their bums, should they dare to turn their backs on me.’
    • ‘Look for octopuses, barracuda, cuttlefish, and bare bums.’
    • ‘The class consists of a warm-up, 40 minutes of exercises for bums, tums and thighs, followed by a cool-down and stretching session.’
    • ‘Go figure, maybe it makes their bums look small.’
    • ‘I tried to help out, trying to not seem all that selfish and let him do the work and all, but alas, he insisted on me just sitting on my lazy bum and watch him.’
    • ‘‘I'm a bit lazy and need a kick up the bum sometimes,’ he says.’
    • ‘I've seen a few of these series on videotape advertised on TV recently and if I weren't so lazy I'd probably get of my fat bum and buy some.’
    • ‘Why don't I get up off my lazy bum and be proactive, confess my undying love, or something!’
    • ‘People ask how a guy like me, blessed with wispy hair that dances in the autumnal wind, three fine pairs of shoes and a wife with a pleasant round bum, can still be miserable and paranoid.’
    • ‘You wander up the corridor looking for a coffee machine and women turn round and stare, saying ‘Hmmmm nice bum!’’
    • ‘Two of the three theatres in the Kyogle Cinema show all the latest movies in comfort with thick seats (hate that sore bum thing) and cheap prices.’
    • ‘It's jazzed up with a French name and claims to restore your figure to the dimensions of a teenage gymnast, but basically, it's bum cream.’
    • ‘Now, moving on to this afternoon's topic - it'll be of particular interest to you ladies who always worry ‘does my bum look big in this?’’
    buttocks, bottom, cheeks, hindquarters, haunches, rear, rump, rear end, backside, seat
    View synonyms

Origin

Late Middle English of unknown origin.