Bear With Us, And We'll Keep Our Clothes On

Homonyms strike again! 'Bear with me' is something you might say if you're having trouble meeting a deadline. 'Bare with me' is something you would say to someone who might be willing to sleep with you. As you can see, mixing the two up could have unpleasant consequences.

Picture: Michel Porro/Getty Images

The Macquarie Dictionary defines 'bear with' as "to be patient with", which sums it up pretty well. Patience is less common if you happen to end up bare, but that doesn't stop the wrong version showing up in professional contexts such as this news report.

It's an easy mistake to make if you've never seen the expression written down, but that's all the more reason to get it right. Accuracy matters.

Lifehacker's Mind Your Language column offers bossy advice on improving your writing.


Comments

    I can never unsee that stock photo.

      Why is it that usually the people who want to get naked in public are precisely those people who shouldn't get naked in public?

    It seems that the word 'bear' has numerous meanings in English, whereas 'bare' only have one (i.e. naked, reveal). So where in doubt, use 'bear' - statistically, you should be alright.

    Lol! I'm pretty sure I know the guy in front of the dog! I'll have to show this to the guys at work. And I'm kinda surprised a penis would be allowed to be in the pic but there is one there alright!

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