screw around


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screw (one) around

To harass, manipulate, or bother one, especially in a deceptive or frivolous manner. He's been screwing me around ever since we started going out—I can't tell if he really wants to be with me. The phone company has been screwing us around with all sorts of extra charges and fees we didn't sign up for. He's been aiming for a promotion for years, but upper management just keeps screwing him around.
See also: around, screw

screw around

1. To play or tinker with something, often in an aimless manner. Hey, don't screw around with the thermostat—it needs to stay at 68 degrees. Grandpa's still screwing around with that old radio, but I doubt he'll get it to work again.
2. To engage in aimless recreation or frivolous time-wasting. Quit screwing around with the dog and work on your book report already! The employees were screwing around in the office until the boss showed up.
3. rude slang To have a casual sexual relationship with someone. Betsy and I are just screwing around, which is great because I don't want a serious relationship anyway.
4. To joke about something. Often used in the negative to indicate absolute seriousness. Oh, come on, Tina, we're just screwing around. We didn't mean it.
See also: around, screw

screw around with (something)

1. To play or tinker with something, often in an aimless manner. Hey, don't screw around with the thermostat—it needs to stay at 68 degrees. Let me screw around with the settings and see if I can get the video to play. Grandpa's still screwing around with that old radio, but I doubt he'll get it to work again.
2. To engage in aimless recreation or frivolous time-wasting with someone or something. Quit screwing around with the dog and work on your book report already!
3. rude slang To have a casual sexual relationship with someone. I can't believe you're still screwing around with Betsy. Why don't you guys try actually dating?
See also: around, screw

screw someone around

Inf. to harass or bother someone. Don't screw me around, man! I bite back! Max got tired of being screwed around by Lefty.
See also: around, screw

screw around

 
1. Inf. to mess around; to waste time. Stop screwing around and get to work! I'm not screwing around, I'm thinking.
2. Inf. to play sexually; to indulge in sexual intercourse. A few couples were screwing around at the party. They say that Ted and Alice are screwing around a lot.
See also: around, screw

screw around

1. Fool around aimlessly, accomplishing nothing, as in If you boys would stop screwing around we'd have the fence painted in an hour. It is also put as screw around with, as in Stop screwing around with the new camera. The idiom probably derives from screw in the sense of "turn" or "twist." [Slang; second half of 1900s]
2. Be sexually promiscuous, as in He's been screwing around behind her back for years. [ Vulgar slang; first half of 1900s]
See also: around, screw

screw around

v.
1. Slang To engage in frivolous activity: I spent the day screwing around watching TV. We spent the evening screwing around at the pool hall. Stop screwing around and get to work!
2. Slang screw around with To manipulate or work with something without a clear sense of method: Who's been screwing around with my computer?—It's not working properly.
3. Vulgar Slang To be sexually unfaithful.
See also: around, screw

screw around

1. to engage in copulation. She wants to talk about their relationship and he only wants to screw around.
2. in. to waste time. John’s always screwing around and never does anything on time.
See also: around, screw
References in periodicals archive ?
We thought, don't tamper with it, don't screw around with the formula.
Several months ago, a Chevron lobbyist created a major stir by being quoted anonymously in Newsweek as saying, in regard to Chevron's potential environmental liability in Ecuador: "We can't let little countries screw around with big companies like this - companies that have made big investments around the world.
If you can be screwed around with, they're going to screw around with you.
You never screw around with the look of classic superheroes," said Justin Prokowiew, a sales associate at Newbury Comics in Leominster.
com is reporting that NBC has decided it'd be a really good idea if "The Office's" writers screw around for a couple of episodes introducing characters for a spinoff series.
The tree-dwelling ape is polygamous and wants to screw around as much as possible.
You can't screw around with other women's emotions like that.
The report also noted a comment by an unnamed Chevron lobbyist to Newsweek who, in reference to the Ecuador lawsuit, said: "We can't let little countries screw around with big companies like this - companies that have made big investments around the world.
They will screw around with that list for a year or longer, and then they'll say they can not find a lot of the veterans.
For a while, (UO strength and conditioning coach Jim Radcliffe) was like, `You guys just screw around too much.
I'm sure there's a lot of people over there who screw around.
Obviously, (Weaver) wants to be an Angel and didn't want to screw around anymore.