When it started, we thought it was going to last just a few weeks. Time passed and here we are, living a routine we would never have imagined. Gradually, we got used to this new way of life: without hugging our loved ones, without giving out kisses on the cheek to anyone we crossed, without exits, without social life, no offices, no gyms. Always hoping things will someday come back as they used to. Quarantine changed our lives and brought us, too, some new words that we already incorporated, almost without realizing it.
To name things is to give them an entity, to recognize that they exist, that they are something. Just as long ago it is natural to say “googleá eso” or “send you a whatsapp ”, the pandemic brought with it a list of words and neologisms that became sadly everyday . Some already existed, others we invented them out of necessity. But to all of them we say several times a day.
The glossary of the pandemic
- Quarantine : Never in the history of mankind was this term used as often as in the last six months. And not only the noun: we also invented the verb (“quarantine”) and why not the adjective (“encuentinado”).
- ASPO : The saddest acronym we could have imagined. Social, Preventive and Compulsory Isolation. All that. It's another way to call quarantine, but it came in the form of a presidential decree and changed our lives overnight.
- Hampabocas : Did anyone ever think that the ritual before leaving home would include checking if we carry the keys, cell phone, wallet and cap ? One more piece of our wardrobe in recent months, is another of the words we name several times a day. Or do you say bluddle ?
- Protocol : If there is something that Argentines don't like it is the protocols. We're more like improvising. But, in this context, protocols became part of our daily life.
- Sanitize : (Or disinfect). Everything. Absolutely everything. The package of biscuits and vegetables. Door handles and hands, constantly.
- 70/30: No, it's not the fernet . This 70/30 became part of our life. And we throw it all out. 70% alcohol, 30% water. Sad but real.
- Social distance : Metro and a half is as close as we can be to any individual we need to interact with. And with flaps, of course.
- Close contact : It occurs when there is not that meter and a half separating us, or there is no distance at all. If someone contracted COVID-19, the first measure is to start thinking about these types of interactions.
- Phases : Sometimes it seems like we're in a video game, unlocking levels. And the worst thing is when we lose and go back, everyone in his city is looking forward to moving through the isolation phases to slowly recover some of the lost freedom.
- Zoomple : Of the most creative. It is a meeting by Zoom, our new preferred platform to get together with family and friends. Of course it's not the same, but those who were serving years during the quarantine were forced to organize these virtual meetings to feel accompanied in the distance.
- Coronnials : Babies who were born during these months are native to this new world. And, perhaps, they never get to know the previous world as it was. The coronnials spent their first months of life locked up at home, with the closest family, without jumping from arm to arm between family and friends.
These are just some of the terms that brought us by the pandemic and quarantine. Can you think of any more?