Bust is a noun.

It can mean the area around the chest, usually of a woman.

Bust can also be used as a word for a small statue, usually showing the head and shoulders of the subject. And it is a term which has come to denote a large-scale arrest, often related to drugs. However, it should not be used as a verb in place of “burst” or “hit”.


To wit:

You may report that a police bust took place. However, it is important to note that police arrested people during the bust.

Female police officers might complain that their bullet-proof vests are too tight in the bust area, and that they dislike wearing them when they go on a bust. However, they too, arrest people. Or maybe detain them for a short time.

This same bust may turn up a stolen bust of a famous figure. And the leader of the criminals (Let’s call him Buster) may have planned to break the small statue by hitting an officer in the chest with it.

However, then, if you weren’t careful, you might be required to report “During the bust, police report that gang leader Buster threatened to bust someone’s bust with the bust instead of allowing himself to be busted.”

And no one, as the kids say, has any time for that.

Police arrest and detain. Sometimes they question.

Water mains collapse. They explode. They catastrophically fail. They even burst. The do not ever, ever bust.

So please, unless you are reporting on a person’s chest area, a small statue, or a large scale arresting event, never, ever use the word “bust.”


To be fair, language is a living thing. Therefore, you are well within your rights to pass on the simple instructions of Young MC and “bust a move.”

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