mess around with someone

mess around with (someone or something)

1. To tinker or fiddle with something. Hey, don't mess around with the thermostat—it needs to stay at 68 degrees. Grandpa's still messing around with that old radio, but I doubt he'll get it to work again.
2. To test or use something in order to learn more about it. I'm messing around with a different platform for my blog, and I can't decide if I like it or not.
3. To engage in aimless recreation or frivolous time-wasting with someone or something; to fool around with someone or something. Quit messing around with the dog and work on your book report already, Scotty!
4. To tease or play a prank on someone, often by trying to get them to believe something that is not true. Come on, stop messing around with me. There's no such thing as ghosts.
5. To engage in casual sex acts with someone. Betsy and I are just messing around with each other, which is great because I don't want a serious relationship anyway.
See also: around, mess

mess around (with someone)

and mess about (with someone) and monkey around (with someone)
1. in. to play with someone sexually. Those two have been messing around. He started monkeying around, so I got out of the car.
2. in. to waste someone’s time. Don’t mess around with me. Just answer the question, if you please.
3. in. to waste time with someone else. I was messing around with John.
See also: around, mess, someone
References in periodicals archive ?
She feels that if I truly loved her I wouldn't have been able to mess around with someone else.
''If you want to mess around, mess around with someone from some other country,'' said Tan, 45, general manager of the Pica Shanghai printing house, which opened in 1994.
Dennis Martin, national president of the American Federation of Police, drew enthusiastic applause when he told the audience, "Criminals are not going to mess around with someone who has a gun and can give them the instant death penalty.
PHOTO: "Criminals are not going to mess around with someone who has a gun and can give them the instant death penalty;" declared Dennis Martin, national president of the American Federation of Police.