There’s a new F-word when it comes to dating and it rhymes with ouchy.
Anthony Fauci, MD, the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, has become a verb without even knowing it. When you “Fauci” someone, you don’t date that person because he or she is not taking Covid-19 and COvid-19 precautions seriously enough. For example, you may be Fauci-ing him because he claimed that the Covid-19 coronavirus is a hoax or is nothing more than the common cold. Or perhaps you have Fauci’d her because she’s posting selfies while in a maskless mosh pit.
On this AXIOS on HBO video, Fauci learned that his name has got its verb on:
Of course, Fauci probably has not been Fauci’d himself, except for the fact that he is Fauci. Throughout much of the pandemic, Fauci has been urging everyone to take the Covid-19 coronavirus more seriously even when some people in the White House in 2020 were suggesting that the pandemic was no big deal.
The current pandemic has highlighted how much we all depend on and are affected by each other. Spending time around someone who is not taking recommended Covid-19 precautions seriously or who himself or herself spends time with others who don’t take the precautions seriously could in turn put you at risk. Therefore, it is perfectly reasonable to ask your work colleague, your friend, or your potential date questions such as the following:
- Do you think the Covid-19 coronavirus is a serious threat? Why or why not?
- Are you wearing a face mask when and where it is recommended? Are your friends doing so as well?
- Are you washing your hands frequently and thoroughly? Do you count beyond 20 seconds or sing through the first chorus of “I Touch Myself” while lathering up with soap and water?
- Are keeping at least six feet or one Denzel (because Denzel Washington is about six feet tall) away from others at all times?
The answers to these questions can help you decide whether to Fauci the person. Being Fauci’d or Fauci-ing is not the only new pandemic-related dating term. The language learning app Babbel and The Latest Catch blog piece by Carly Johannson on the dating website Plenty of Fish have listed some of the other terms. Here are some of them in alphabetical order:
- Apocalypsing: When you apocalypse and use it like a verb, you treat every single connection as if it’s the last and thus become way too serious way too early. That’s because you are treating the pandemic like the apocalypse and must grab hold of everything while you can. It’s a bit like what you may have done with toilet paper in 2020 but with a person, unless, of course, dating a roll of toilet paper is your thing. While it’s important to treat the virus seriously, it is not the end of the world. You will likely be OK if you follow real public health recommendations and precautions.
- Antibody boy or girl: You are this when you boast about testing positive for antibodies against the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2). In other words, you are claiming that you are immune to the virus and using it as one of your selling points as in “pick me, at least your won’t get SARS-CoV2.” A variation of this may be Covid-19 vaccine boy or girl, especially while vaccine supplies are limited. Of course, surprise, surprise, saying something on a dating web site doesn’t mean it’s true. Plus, having antibodies or having been vaccinated is not a guarantee that you can’t catch and transmit the virus.
- Baby Zoomers: These will be the babies that are conceived during the pandemic. This is not a great term to use on a first date, though. It would be too soon to say, “let’s create some Baby Zoomers.” Babies are not like throw pillows. Once they are born, they will require care. So if you are not ready to be a parent, use proper birth control.
- Corona-Zoned: When you get “Friend-Zoned,” someone views you as no more than friend and not as a romantic possibility. In other words, you generate about as much sexual attraction as a vacuum cleaner (for most people, that is). Getting out of the “Friend Zone” can seem about as likely as time travel. By comparison, getting out of the “Corona Zones” can appear to be much easier. The “Corona Zone” is when you can’t move forward with a relationship due to the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic. If this is the case, you simply have to wait until the things are more safe, because eventually the pandemic will pass. Of course, getting “climate change zoned” would be a different story.
- Covidivorce: The Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has added stress to many marriages, which can worsen existing problems and lead to separation and divorce. Therefore, if in a relationship, you may want to conduct an inventory of how things are going and how to alleviate current stressors.
- Covid-worthy: The risks of Covid-19 and the extra effort required for precaution can seemingly push the stakes of dating higher. Before the pandemic, your criteria for meeting a person in person may have been lower such as not carrying a battle axe in profile picture or getting your name right most of the time. However, these days standards may be a bit higher. Determine whether someone is “Covid-worthy” is determining whether that person is worth making the Covid-19 precautions effort and potential risk.
- Ex text, COVID-edition: Maybe the pandemic has made you worry about the future. Maybe your time social distancing has made you think about the past. Either way, you could find yourself texting an ex, someone you dated previously, something like, “hey, watched Schitt’s Creek the other day, made me wonder you are doing because that was sort of what people were saying about our relationship.” Be careful, though. Remembering only the good can be like remembering the tequila shots but not the hangover. There’s usually a good reason why the two of your broke up in the first place. Re-engaging could be like taking your shoe and slapping your forehead with it. It could open up old wounds.
- FODA: This isn’t an enemy of Yoda. Instead, it stands for “Fear of Dating Again,” because you may be afraid of catching the virus. Understand the difference between being careful and being fearful though. There are precautions that you can take to date and different ways to date safely like via video.
- Lockblocking: This rhymes with something that may look like “rooster-blocking” but really has nothing to do with roosters. Lockblocking is when some type of lockdown rules prevent you from doing something like meeting up or having sex.
- Maskerading: People may do this to avoid being Fauci’d. It’s when you pretend to care about and adhere to Covid-19 precautions just to charm a potential date when you really don’t. Add this to the list of things that people may say just to attract someone such as “I am not into drama.” Yes, shocking but true. People actually aren’t what they portray themselves to be.
- Quarantine and chill: This is pretty straightforward. You are quarantining with someone and just hanging out.
- Quarantine bae’: This ain’t quite a “quarantine significant other” or a “quarantine relationship.” More on the latter in a second. A quarantine bae’ is several steps more than “what’s your name again?” It’s a romantic interest that you’ve tentatively agreed to see. Now tentative means leave your options open.
- Quarantionship: This is a relationship that began during quarantine. So instead of “Cake by the Ocean,” maybe your got “Cake via the Zoom.”
- Sexually isolating (or sexually distancing): This can be looked at in two ways. You are either depriving the world of that fantastic gift known as your sexy, sexy body or you are doing the world a favor by not trying to hookup with different people and spreading the virus. Either way, you have chosen (or maybe others have chosen for you) to not engage in sex with others during the pandemic. Of course, you may be using this as an excuse as in “yeah, I’m not having sex because of sexual distancing due to the pandemic. The two decades before 2020? Yeah, that was due to climate change.”
- Smugsolation: Yes, it’s nice that you have a great relationship during the pandemic. Yeah, it’s great that you are posting all those cuddling pictures on Facebook and Instagram, along with many heart emojis and cutesy sayings like, “life couldn’t be better” and “what’s [fill in the blank] when you don’t have anyone to share it with?” But a little too much can across as smug, especially to those who are single or are in less than ideal relationships.
- Turbo relationship: “Hey, you like pound cake, I like cake by the pound. Let’s get married,” is not the reason to take a relationship to the next level. Nevertheless, some relationships may be going on fast-forward due to the stress of the pandemic. After all, in these “uncertain” times, sometimes people feel the need to have more certainty, or at least the perception of certainty.
- Vate or a virtual date: This is essentially a remote or a video date, which can occur on platforms such as Zoom, FaceTime, or Houseparty.
- Zoomlander-ing: Have you been on a Zoom date and the other person seems more interested in checking himself or herself out on the camera than looking at you? That would be Zoomlandering, named after Zoolander, the movie about self-indulgent male models. You can combat this by saying, “would you like to be alone with yourself” or putting a cat filter on your screen to see if he or she even notices.
- Zumping: This is a combination of Zoom and dumping. To zump someone is to dump that person or break off a relationship via a video platform like Zoom. If you are using FaceTime, you could in theory use the term FaceDumping but that could come off the wrong way. Of course, in normal times, a remote break-up when an in-person break-up is possible is not very cool and can be a cowardly way out of a relationship. Social distancing during the pandemic has offered somewhat of an excuse to do the deed over video. If you do it, be gentle. Don’t use a background that says something like “you’re outta here” or shows a big dump truck or the poop emoji. Don’t just put the other person on mute or change the person’s screen name to “ex- so-and-so.” And be careful about the reasons that you offer for the zumping. For example, “it’s not you, it’s your background” or “it’s not you, it’s your wifi” may not quite fly.
As I have described previously for Forbes, the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic has changed how dating is done. Looks like it has also created a whole new lexicon too. Using such new terms can be a good reminder to take the proper precautions as long as the proper perspective is maintained. These aren’t permanent times but they are different. After all, it’s not every day that a scientist’s name becomes a dating term.