Who would’ve thought, this time last year, that words like “lockdown”, “pandemic” and “quarantine” would be rolling off our tongues so readily?
Back in December 2019, coronavirus was but a distant blip on a foreign horizon, something that might be happening in China but it would never come here, right?
Yeah right. Not only is Covid-19 ruling our lives, it’s ruling our language. “Lockdown” was crowned SA’s word of the year by the Pan South African Language Board and media research company Focal Points after being used nearly 500?000 times in print media, online and in broadcasts in the six months since President Cyril Ramaphosa announced the country was going into lockdown on 27 March.