Be There or Be Square: What this Term Means, Where It Came From

During English conversation, you may hear the term “be there or be square”. It is an odd-sounding phrase which can seem a little confusing at first, but the meaning is simple, once explained. Here we will take a look at what this term means, where it came from and how we can use it in our daily conversations.

Be There Or Be Square

Be There Or Be Square Meaning

“Be there or be square” is a phrase that talks about an unmissable event and it is important that you attend because if you don’t, you will surely be missing out. The term square refers to someone who is a bit boring or dull and therefore if you do not attend the event, you will be seen as boring or dull.

Origin of this idiom

The phrase was first coined between World War II and the 1950s, and so is a relatively new phrase when we look at how far back some terms date. Some people would say that the square portion of the phrase also uses a play on words, in that you will be a square if you are not at the event because you will not be “a-round”.

“Be There Or Be Square” Examples

You might use the term be there or be square when telling a friend about a party. For example if you are inviting them to a party which is going to be a big event, all the best people will be there and the music is set to be brilliant, you might invite your friend and tell the “It is going to be the best party ever, be there or be square.”

Conversation examples:

The term be there or be square is more likely to be heard during conversations of an informal nature. Some ways in which you might hear the phrase, could be like these conversations.

Conversation 1:

  • Person 1: Samantha is having her baby shower this afternoon.
  • Person 2: Does she have anything special planned?
  • Person 1: It is supposed to be the best baby shower that anyone has ever thrown, be there or be square.

Conversation 2:

  • Person 1: I can’t believe you missed the party last weekend.
  • Person 2: I know, everyone is talking about it, I feel so out of touch.
  • Person 1: I did warn you, be there or be square.

Other Ways to Say the Phrase

This is a phrase with quite a unique meaning, however there are other ways to express the importance of attending an event in order to stay up to date and be in the know. Some of these could be:

  • If you’re not there, you will have FOMO (fear of missing out)
  • All the cool kids are going.

What Is “Be There Or Be Square”? | Picture

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