5 May 2020
There are a lot of catch phrases that have entered into our familiar language this year. The first are obviously either Covid or Coronavirus. Probably going to score very highly in the ‘most googled’ words, and could well be the first words spoken by many babies this year.
Social isolation and social distancing (yes yes, I am aware it should be physical not social distancing) have become such familiar phrases that it’s almost hard to remember a time when we didn’t have to stand apart from each other.
Flattening the curve used to be primarily the domain of Weight Watchers, but not any longer.
But the other one that appears on most news reports is “unprecedented”. I would challenge you to watch a news bulletin and not hear at least one ‘unprecedented’ per segment.
The unprecedented stuff includes:
• The virus – obviously unprecedented (well – apart from other viruses that were scary – Ebola etc)!!
• Pandemic – unprecedented (well – apart from Spanish flu, smallpox, etc)!!
• Lockdown/Isolation – unprecedented (apart from those other times in history where people were isolated to prevent spread of disease)!!
Potential NZ-Aus travel bubble – unprecedented!!
Regional border closures – unprecedented!!
Beach closures – unprecedented!!
Toilet paper crisis – unprecedented!!
Footy season, Olympic Games, pubs and cafes closed – you know, the stuff that means the most to people 🙂 – unprecedented!!
But unprecedented is not just applicable to virus related reporting. Hamblin related news items include:
Simon letting me drive the car – unprecedented.
Simon not adjusting settings in the car – unprecedented.
Simon speaking clearly – unprecedented.
Me, not picking on Simon – unprecedented.
Anyone other than me unloading the dishwasher – unprecedented.
I’m sure you have a lot of unprecedented stuff in your house too.
Journalists’s not using the word ‘unprecedented’ every third sentence? THAT’S unprecedented!!