The word "bum" is used as a noun to describe a person who is not interested in working and chooses to survive on meager resources. Sometimes we use this word to describe homeless people, but "bum" is applied to many different situations.

  • There are a couple of bums looking for something to eat from the garbage cans in the alley.
  • They say you shouldn’t give money to a bum because he should learn how to earn his own income.
  • Our neighbor dresses like a bum even though he has a lot of money.


He met a bum while walking down the road.

Sometimes the word "bum" is used for people who are incompetent or careless:

  • That doctor is a bum. He gave me the wrong advice.
  • The governor is a bum. He should be replaced.
  • Our waiter is a bum. He made a mistake on our order.

You can use the word "bum" as a verb to mean a person is wandering aimlessly, or a person is made to feel sad.

  • Those kids are bumming around downtown.
  • Let’s go to the mall and bum around.
  • I’m just bumming around the house today.
  • They were bummed out when their team lost the game.
  • Stop talking about death. You’re bumming me out!

The word "bummer" is used to describe a depressing situation:

  • This is a bummer.
  • That movie was a bummer.
  • Bummer.

Click here to learn more words.

October 30, 2014