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How to spot a ‘Covidiot’

We’ve all tutted at one. We’ve probably all been one, at some time or another. But now there is a word for it. This week, online slang gatherer Urban Dictionary defined ‘Covidiot’ as, “Someone who ignores the warnings regarding public health and safety [relating to Covid-19].”

Below is an example sentence.
“Are you serious [sic] going to visit grandma?” it reads, “Dude, don’t be such a Covidiot.”

It’s time we learned how to spot a Covidiot from afar…


Government advice has, to put it mildly, not always been easy to follow. “Don’t shop any more than normal,” they said, “but only go out once a day, and avoid shops.” Still, that does not excuse the 428 cases of Sharmin toilet paper you now live with, after that fevered morning in. Or the fact you wrestled an neighbour/war veteran/vulnerable carer/grandparent out of the way to get to the final 6-pack of Sapporo every single day last week. Or the ambulance you stole so you could use it as storage for your hand sanitizer soap. Covidiot.

Brazen confidence

You’re young, you’re fit, you’re clean, you’re not, like, hugging people when you see them but you are still seeing people, because they too are young and fit and clean, so what’s there to worry about? You’re sure it won’t happen to you. Really, when you think about it, the government are only releasing guidelines, which only really people who might get it need to follow, or might die, or are old. Other people, basically. Not you. You can continue pretty much as normal, spreading, spreading, spreading. Covidiot.

Friends of friends who’ve “heard things”

If I had a dollar for every Facebook message that’s started with “Don’t know how true this is but my [insert either friend/friend of a friend/family member/sister’s first husband’s gardener’s old Latin teacher’s ex-boyfriend] is a [something important] and he says the Army are going to…’ I would have $4 to spend on more toilet paper.

There haven’t been so many round-robin scare stories since the mid-noughties, when everyone was certain men were getting into the back seat of your car when you went to pay at the gas station. The Army were meant to be patrolling the streets a week ago, if the high-placed friends of friends were to be believed. Supermarkets should already have stricter door policies than Costco, too. And anyone who has eaten mounds of garlic would now be immune to Covid-19. But they aren’t. Covidiots.

It’s only flu

Oh, what’s the worry, anyway? You had a really, really bad cold the other year – we’re talking in bed for hours, couldn’t get up to do more than a light run, quick shop and short weekend break – and know what flu is like. Coronavirus, as far as you can tell by reading on Reddit, has a smaller chance of killing you than becoming a sheep farmer, and the symptoms are a cough and a fever, which are both things you’ve had loads before so, basically, you’re happy to just get it and get it over with. Better proceed as normal then. No. Covidiot.

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