Definition of mess around/about in English:

mess around/about

1Behave in a silly or playful way, especially so as to cause irritation.
More example sentences
  • Well I just thought it was silly girls messing about, that they had been drinking or something so I didn't think twice about it.
  • We rang and messed around, recording silly messages of witty retorts to various ‘players’.
  • The excitement was infectious and the adults too were to be seen sniggering over silly things, and messing about, being boys again.
1.1Spend time doing something in a pleasantly desultory way, with no definite purpose or serious intent: messing about in boats
More example sentences
  • Two years later, McCaleb is retired, popping 34 pills a day and spending his time messing around in a boat.
  • Also, I had spent a happy childhood messing about in boats on the Solent.
  • You know, I wrote a story about some children who spent their time messing about in boats in the Lake District.
See parent entry: mess

Get more from Oxford Dictionaries

Subscribe to remove adverts and access premium resources

Word of the day vituperate
Pronunciation: vɪˈtjuːpəreɪt
verb
blame or insult (someone) in strong language...