Green’s Dictionary of Slang

bugger about v.

also bugger around
[bugger v.2 ]

1. to wander around.

[UK]P. Larkin letter 25 Oct. in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 81: Cecil [...] is no longer buggering about round here.

2. to mess about with; thus buggering about n.

[UK](con. 1916) F. Manning Her Privates We (1986) 130: We’re buggered about, and taken over miles o’ground.
[Ire](con. 1880–90s) S. O’Casey I Knock at the Door 225: If there was any more of this buggerin’ about with the good name of the throops he’d let the Lord Lieutenant know all the details.
[UK]D. Davin For the Rest of Our Lives 105: It wouldn’t be the Army if you weren’t buggered about.
[Aus](con. 1944) L. Glassop Rats in New Guinea 166: I am not here to be laughed at, chaffed at and otherwise buggered about by the peasantry.
[UK]‘P.B. Yuill’ Hazell Plays Solomon (1976) 88: Fred was being buggered about by his editor.
[UK]Guardian Rev. 3 Sept. 18: Movies that got buggered about by internal studio politics.

3. to waste time, to stall, to be unhelpful; thus buggering about n.

[Ire](con. 1940s) B. Behan Borstal Boy 335: Now, no buggering about.
[Aus]P. Temple Bad Debts (2012) [ebook] I buggered about, bought a drink, looked at the magazines, studied the engine additives .
[Aus]P. Temple Dead Point (2008) [ebook] It’s all that buggering around with carpentry. You don’t do enough law.
[Aus]S. Maloney Sucked In 155: Save the taxpayer the expense of further buggering around. Those forensic tests cost a poultice.
[Aus]L. Redhead Thrill City [ebook] I could bugger around for hours searching the hard way [...] but I didn’t have time.

4. to make someone’s life miserable or in some way difficult.

[UK]N&Q 12 Ser. IX 379: A more expressive form is ‘To be b-ggered about,’ to be given unnecessary drill or manoeuvres.
[UK](con. 1916) F. Manning Her Privates We (1986) 49: We’re just ’umped an’ bumped an’ buggered about all over fuckin’ France.
[UK]P. Larkin letter 2 Jan. in Thwaite Sel. Letters (1992) 54: Well, if your New Year resolution is not to let any bugger bugger you about, mine is not to give a bugger for any bugger.
[NZ]G. Slatter Gun in My Hand 225: The band playing [...] to the tune of we won’t be buggered about about we won’t be buggered about but we were.
[Aus]J. Wynnum I’m a Jack, All Right 23: Now if you intend to bugger me about, give me back that dough.
[UK]G.F. Newman Sir, You Bastard 202: You’re buggering me about.
[Aus]R. Beckett Dinkum Aussie Dict. 11: One can be [...] ‘buggered about’ (given a hard time by one’s mates or employer).
[UK]Indep. on Sun. Rev. 20 June 30: Buggering about a woman’s life, smashing her hopes.
[UK]M. Amis Experience 290: He felt ‘buggered about’ by the setters.