hum


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hem and haw

To speak in an evasive, vague, roundabout way in order to avoid responding to a question or making a definite statement. The phrase comes from the common filler words often used by habit or when one is deciding what to say. How much longer do we have to hear this guy hem and haw? I wish they would get on with the debate.
See also: and, haw, hem

hum and haw

To speak in an evasive, vague, roundabout way in order to avoid responding to a question or making a definite statement. The phrase comes from the common filler words often used by habit or when one is deciding what to say. Primarily heard in UK. How much longer do we have to hear this guy hum and haw? I wish they would get on with the debate.
See also: and, haw, hum

ho-hum

Dull or boring. I heard she got sick of her ho-hum existence and ran off to New York City.

hem and haw (around)

Inf. to be uncertain about something; to be evasive; to say "ah" and "eh" when speaking—avoiding saying something meaningful. Stop hemming and hawing around. I want an answer. Don't just hem and haw around. Speak up. We want to hear what you think.
See also: and, haw, hem

hum with activity

Fig. [for a place] to be busy with activity. The kitchen hummed with activity as usual. Our main office was humming with activity during the busy season.
See also: activity, hum

hem and haw

Be hesitant and indecisive; avoid committing oneself, as in When asked about their wedding date, she hemmed and hawed, or The President hemmed and hawed about new Cabinet appointments. This expression imitates the sounds of clearing one's throat. [Late 1700s]
See also: and, haw, hem

hem and haw

BRITISH, AMERICAN or

hum and haw

BRITISH
If you hem and haw or hum and haw, you take a long time to say something because you cannot think of the right words, or because you are not sure what to say. Tim hemmed and hawed, but finally told his boss the truth. My mother hummed and hawed at first, but eventually she sent her agreement. Note: People sometimes use hum and ha with the same meaning. Abu hummed and ha-ed a little.
See also: and, haw, hem

hum and haw (or ha)

hesitate; be indecisive. British
The word hum has been used as an inarticulate syllable in hesitant speech since Chaucer; ha appears in a similar role from the early 17th century.
See also: and, haw, hum

ho-hum

(ˈhoˈhəm)
mod. dull; causing yawns of boredom. (Ho-hum is a representation of the sound of a yawn.) Clare played another ho-hum concert at the music hall last night.

hum job

and hummer
n. a sexual act involving holding the penis in the mouth while humming. (see also humdinger.) He asked for a hum job, so she hummed him a lullaby.
See also: hum, job

hem and haw

To be hesitant and indecisive; equivocate: "a leader who cannot make up his or her mind, never knows what to do, hems and haws" (Margaret Thatcher).
See also: and, haw, hem

hem and haw

To refuse to give a definite answer. “Hem,” similar in derivation to the interjection “ahem,” meant to hesitate. “Haw” meant much the same sense of being noncommittal. Combine the two, and you have someone who's stalling for time and hoping not to have to respond any further.
See also: and, haw, hem
References in periodicals archive ?
Parking & Meter Tools help drivers find their parked vehicles in malls, airports, and arenas -- using the hum smartphone app -- while also allowing them to set reminders for the meter.
Hum is a graduate of Wesleyan University and the Fordham University School of Law.
The Hum TV Awards take place on April 9 at Dubai World Trade Centre, 8.
Word of the ride got out on some blogs and social media but Hum never expected many people to participate.
Freelance composer, Dr Ross Whyte has been assisting Dr Kim with the project and contributed his own hum - Morningtown Ride - a Seekers hit in the 1960's.
The hum is also more commonly heard in rural or suburban environments.
A low sodium, natural yeast extract, Gistex HUM LS is derived from the extracts of primary grown baker's yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.
Having been a physics teacher I presumed a possible explanation was the lobby and stairway space resonating to a hum coming from the electricity pylons which are some 200 yds away.
Seems that the Marton Hum was not an isolated incident, but something felt across the world.
Those phenomena may be the ultimate cause of Earth's hum, Romanowicz and Rhie speculate in the Sept.
The hum has been consistently identified in seismic records.
By now, you know my mantra--we must make the invoice printer hum if we expect to survive and thrive.
If you could hum your way through the day, you wouldn't get sinusitis," researcher Dr.
This means that each of her works on paper depends on its companions to generate an inter-textual hum, and in this case, that hum never rose to full, mysterious pitch.
increased interleukin-2/interferon-gamma with concomitant decreased interleukin-4/ interleukin-10 cytokine production (AIDS Res Hum Retroviruses, 12:11, p.