Definition of futz in English:



[with object]North American informal
  • Waste time; idle or busy oneself aimlessly.

    ‘mother futzed around in the kitchen’
    • ‘After futzing with it for almost an hour with one of our local computer gurus, the connection came back just as magically as it had disappeared.’
    • ‘Andy was futzing through the entertainment center looking for CDs to burn.’
    • ‘Meanwhile Bianca futzes with drumbeats; it seems like she has trouble finding the right speed.’
    • ‘Another study showed that the average office worker futzes for about 5.1 hours a week.’
    • ‘When they toured the west coast on their ‘farewell tour’, I futzed and fumbled for weeks when they chose not to play Los Angeles, and logistical challenges kept me from making the six-hour drive to the San Francisco show.’
    • ‘This morning I got up and futzed around the house for a few hours then set out to return a DVD to the library and then go sell clothes.’
    • ‘I changed into an old Inkspot t-shirt and a pair of shorts and futzed around in my room relaxing.’
    • ‘Firefighters proceed to break into warehouse, climb up on roof, and generally futz around for close to an hour, during which time they at last succeed in shutting off insanely loud bell-like alarm after numerous tries.’
    • ‘We're going to futz around Brooklyn and then go out for drinkage and reminiscing about how we used to play croquet at the university cemetery while drinking G&T's and quoting liberally from Heathers.’
    • ‘The favorable thing is this precedent frees us individuals to futz with our own budgets including the reporting of expenses on our tax returns.’
    • ‘The good thing is this precedent frees us individuals to imaginatively futz with our own budgets including the reporting of tax expenses.’
    • ‘There are no bells and whistles to futz with or pay for - just solid performance with plenty of interior space at three pounds and change.’
    • ‘Of course I had to fiddle and futz with the images until I was satisfied, hence the delay.’
    • ‘So I spent a fair amount of time playing Atari games and futzing with early personal computers back in the day, but remember lots of time away from the digital playthings as well - which occasionally included doing not much of anything at all.’
    • ‘And I'm still wondering if I should just return the thing the get on with my life (I've wasted a good 10 hours on hold, at the dealer, and futzing with the device).’
    • ‘‘These are people who feel the schools have no place futzing with their children's mental health,’ she explained.’
    • ‘I have read the manual 10 times, and been futzing with this thing for the past 2 hours, I need a senior engineer.’
    • ‘After nervously futzing with wood and various implements of joinery for more than a morning, I produced a wriggly, trapezoidal sort of thing.’
    • ‘Stop futzing around trying to read the tea leaves.’
    • ‘Now quit futzing around and go do it. 500-1000 words.’


1930s perhaps an alteration of Yiddish arumfartzen ‘fart about’.