When someone says "Mind your B.I. business", whats the B.I. stand for?

When someone says “Mind your B.I. business”, whats the B.I. stand for?


Chris, welcome to the Straight Dope Message Board. As for your question, I have no idea. But you probably won’t find out here. I’d suggest taking a look at the front page of the forums and rereading the descriptions of the individual forums.

The one you’d get the best results for this question is General Questions. Also, I’d have a more descriptive thread title, such as “B.I. business?”.

Moderator’s Note: Edited thread title and moved from Great Debates to General Questions.

I’ve never heard anyone say that. Can you give an example of someone using it in context? Like from a book, movie, or TV show?

I have assumed (with no evidence whatever) that it’s a repetition for emphasis of the first letters of a jocular misspelling of “biziness.” (Like the T in T-total.)

Wouldn’t that be “teetotal”?

The only thing that sounds vaguely familiar to me about that phrase is something I remember hearing in childhood a lot:

“MYOB” = Mind Your Own Business. I’ve never heard the BI part.

Good luck.

mabye it was someone stupid trying to spell out buisness, but when they started they said: mind your BI uh…, and then they realized they cant spell and just said the word :stuck_out_tongue:

lol i feel really stupid after saying that and then i spelled business wrong

Thank you all. I believe my silly question belongs in General Question Board. First thread for me, I’ve learnd something about the site already. Thanks again…

Are you sure they aren’t saying “mind your own bloody business”?
(It doesn’t sound much like BI, but its all I can think of)

Well, Business Intelligence is one of the current buzz words being used in an attempt to get upper management to actually invest in computer systems, these days, but I can’t imagine a context where the phrase of the OP would be used with that meaning.

I just Googled on “mind your own B. I. business” and I found a couple of websites that used the expression, so it must be known to a few people other than the OP. I suspect that it’s a piece of slang that’s only known in a fairly small region. I don’t think that we can answer the question of its origin here, since none of us have ever heard the phrase ourselves.

Chris Howley, I have a suggestion. See if you can find a website for one of the big dictionary companies. See if you can find either an E-mail address or a ordinary mailing address where you can report on and/or ask questions about new words. They might be able to able to answer your question about where this expression originated. At the very least, they might be interested in hearing about a new piece of slang.

I heard the expression as a kid growing up in the Bronx in the 1950s, so it goes back quite a way.

Could by the “B.I.zness” explanation. But the more I think about it, the more I think it stands for “Butt-Insky,” that is, somebody prone to butting in to other’s affairs. I would guess it’s a Yiddishism or a pseudo-Yiddishism. Seeing as we used the latter expression alot, that could be it.

From Merriam-Webster

Main Entry: butt·in·sky
Variant(s): also butt·in·ski /b&-'din-skE/
Function: noun
Inflected Form(s): plural -skies
Etymology: butt in + -sky, -ski (last element in Slavic surnames)
Date: 1902
: a person given to butting in : a troublesome meddler

I believe we have a winner. Colibri seems to be making a good point, I too am from the area. By the way, I have not used or heard the term in many,many year’s. It sounds good enough for me. Thanks…

Here is the striaght dope on the phrase “None of your B. I. Business”. I am 53 years old now, my mom tells me the story about the time that my little sister kept bugging me about something. In my frustration I started to say, None of your business" and to emphasize my statement I started to spell the word business with B.I. than realized that I did not know how to spell it (age 5) so I said business again.

It went like this: “None of your business, B.I. (Pause) business”.

Well my little sister thought that it was the funnest thing ever and stared using it, our freinds in Radburn NJ used it and later my step family and there friends used it in Huntington, Long Island.

I have heard it used twice, once on the TV show “The Nanny” and in the movie “Uptown Girls”.
Since Fran Dresser is from L.I. she may have heard it, or one of her writers did and put it in the show. As for the movie, I do not know. My guess is that maybe one of the writers of the movie was also a writer for “The Nanny”.

I swear to GOD that this is the truth.

Thanks Mike for solving this 8.5 year old mystery. But do zombies have bizness?

I always spelled it bidness.