Lockdown Lingo

Lockdown lingo

The shelter-in-place / stay-at-home orders have triggered new words and phrases in our collective vocabularies. Some of them existed before but have become more commonly used: coronavirus, pandemic, and virtual happy hour. But others are newly created to describe our COVID-19 mandated world. They are descriptive portmanteaus which aren’t likely to stay in our vocabularies long-term.

Here are my favorite examples of lockdown lingo:

The people you are living with make up your ‘quaranteam’. Whether they are family, housemates, or friends, this is the group of people who need to help get you through the pandemic. If you are by yourself, you’re ‘quaransolo’.

The psychological rollercoaster you experience during the coronavirus pandemic. One minute you’re loving being at home and binging TV, and the next minute you’re overcome with anxiety. It’s an emotional ‘coronacoaster’.

This is what happens when you overdose on too much media, filled with bad news about coronavirus. If you’re not careful, this can result in a ‘panicdemic’.

Lots of men have decided to stop shaving, even those who normally don’t have beards. These often straggly patches of facial hair are called ‘isobeards’ (isolation + beards).

Putting on makeup, especially eyeshadow, before going out in public – even though you’re wearing a face mask.

Not a previous incarnation of the coronavirus, but rather the 10 pounds we’re all gaining from eating too many comfort foods. Perhaps we all misunderstood the instructions to ‘fatten the curve’.

Cocktails created from whatever ingredients you might have lying around, not just martinis. The alcoholic version of leftover stew. Quarantinis are drunk during ‘locktail hour’ and contribute to COVID-10.

While most of us seem to be overeating and drinking, there are a wide variety of fitness challenges and home workouts that try to help you become ‘quarantoned’.

The next generation of babies conceived or born during coronavirus shelter-in-place. They aren’t Millenials or Gen-Z, but maybe they will be known as Gen-C.

The elephant in the Zoom
A glaring issue during a videoconferencing call that everyone notices but nobody talks about. For example, no one mentioning that a co-worker has a really bad isobeard or a television broadcaster isn’t wearing pants. Or perhaps being Zoom-bombed by a sports mascot (although that might be called ‘the shark in the Zoom’):

Do you have a favorite coronavirus lockdown lingo to add to the list?

, ,


  1. Worrying About Sleeping Can Cause Insomnia - Manage By Walking Around - November 8, 2020

    […] Multiple months of poor sleep is considered insomnia. Sleep problems are so widespread that UC Davis Health declared “the coronavirus may be causing a second pandemic of insomnia.” I guess I need to add coronasomnia to my list of new words spurred by the COVID lockdown. […]

  2. Humblebragging Can Make People Dislike You - Manage By Walking Around - February 6, 2022

    […] is a portmanteau of the words humble and brag. It’s typically credited to Harris Wittels, a producer for the TV […]

Leave a Reply