The highly contagious virus affecting the Queen, Ed Sheeran & killing the art of conversation.
The UK is in the grip of a terrible epidemic, a devastating virus which is spreading like wildfire amongst young people and adolescents. The virulent infection is having a huge impact on the victims and their families, robbing them of their ability to communicate. Although the virus targets young children and teenagers, it’s highly contagious and a threat to men, women and children of all ages.
It’s called the ‘Like‘ virus.
Unfortunately, it’s too late for us. Our eldest succumbed to the infection last year. We’ve tried to protect youngest but she’s exposed to it every. single. day. Even I’m starting to show symptoms. So far, Mr T seems immune. I have two theories as to why he’s managed to avoid infection:
Theory A. His strong Derbyshire dialect and deep-rooted slang renders him resistant to external language-corrupting infections.
Theory B. He has minimal exposure to infected individuals when they’re at their most contagious, ie. whilst being driven to and from school and to various sports and social activities.
The ‘Like’ virus.
Although you may not recognise the virus by it’s name, chances are you’ve been in contact with an infected person. You may even live them or you may have contracted the virus yourself.
Even if you haven’t come across this virulent infection, it’s essential you know how to spot the signs and symptoms because early intervention is essential. In fact, if it isn’t treated within 48 hours of the first symptoms appearing, the chances of making a full recovery are slim.
Furthermore, because it’s spread by talking to others, it’s highly contagious and sufferers can infect the rest of their family within hours or entire communities within days or weeks.
Signs and Symptoms.
How do you spot the ‘like’ virus? Initially, the symptoms are fairly mild, with the inappropriate insertion of the word ‘like’ into a sentence.
Ed Sheeran is like an amazing songwriter.
The Queen is like really old.
What?! Ed Sheeran isn’t ‘like‘ an amazing songwriter, he is an amazing songwriter! Likewise, the Queen isn’t ‘like‘ really old, she is really old, (no offence, Your Majesty!)
Once the infection takes hold, symptoms worsen, with increasing inappropriate use of the word ‘like’ in phrases, sentences and paragraphs.
I was like desperate to see Ed Sheeran in concert this year. My friend tried to get tickets but it was like a nightmare because they sold out in like minutes. I was totally gutted because he’s like totally a-ma-zing.
Unfortunately, whilst working in a school a few weeks ago, I was exposed to an advanced case of the ‘like’ virus. The victim, a woman in her twenties, had a shocking affliction. However, as the treatment is best administered by close relatives, I could only listen helplessly as she murdered the English language.
To protect the (not so) innocent, I’ve paraphrased her words :
…and I was like, ‘Really? You’re joking me, right? Like really? OMG! You’re kidding me?!’
She was like, ‘No word of a lie. I’m like being totally serious.’
I was like, ‘No way!’
She was like, ‘Way!’ It was like massive. Like, I’m not even kidding. Like, can you believe he’d go with her?’
I was like, ‘Nah, that’s mental! Cos, he’s like, totally gorgeous, and she’s like right mingin’.
If the victim is to make a full recovery, early detection, diagnosis and treatment is vital. Unfortunately, there are no vaccines available and conventional medicine has proved ineffective. The only way to cure the infection is to interject every time sufferers use the word ‘like’ inappropriately. It’s important not to miss a single ‘like’ as this is a highly resistant infection. The sufferer may find the ‘like-blocking’ irritating and painful. Some may react badly to their treatment. Nevertheless, you must not waver. Perseverance is crucial if you want a positive outcome. Remind them it’s for their own good.
If early intervention isn’t employed, their future ability to succeed and thrive in society will be severely hampered.
Other variants and mutations of the ‘Like’ Virus.
Scientists believe the ‘Like’ virus is a mutation of one or more strains of similar infections known to kill the art of conversation. These include (but are not limited to):
- The ‘You know’ virus.
- The ‘Innit’ virus.
- The ‘Literally’ virus.
- The ‘Basically’ virus.
- The ‘Right’ virus. This variant of the ‘like’ virus is perhaps the most destructive of all, and the most difficult to treat. The ‘right’ virus renders the sufferer unable to carry out the smallest task, activity, function or sentence without first using the word ‘right’. For example, the infected individual, before rising from a chair to begin a task, (such as making a cup of tea), puts both hands on their knees first, accompanied by a forceful, ‘right!’
Over to you.
Have you or someone you know been infected by the ‘Like’ virus? Have you encountered any other variants of the ‘Like’ virus. Please tell me I’m not the only one who sees this as a serious threat!
Note: This is ever so slightly tongue-in-cheek.
I feel the literally variant is more dangerous. Or more annoying.
No one infected at our house as yet but I am ‘like’ chucking away! Mich X
This cracked me up. Me and my husband can’t stand it and always notice it on TV and sit there going “ding” everyone someone like says like! Thanks for joining us as always for #marvmondays x
lolz – or for a fuller version see https://www.economist.com/blogs/prospero/2015/02/johnson-language-anxieties
The innit virus is more prevalent where we are, thankfully not at close quarters yet. Frustrating as the like virus, but watch out for the cheeky virus too, often favoured by those that fancy a Nandos 🙂
I’ll steer clear of Nandos for a bit then!!
Well, basically Jane – I could – like, literally throw my arms around you and hug you – right! Have I got it? Gosh no, does it drive me mad – hell yes. Is it in my household – basically yes! Although, there is someone far worse off than us. The teacher. The teacher who has to hear literally 30 lots of basically all day long. I salute these people. This was basically, like wonderful and I shall slap everyone that says any of these things post haste. We need to stop this virus – right?!!! Xx
I realise in writing this post I have literally exposed myself to its effects even more. I’m a walking one-man-band of verbal ticks now!!!
I love this post! My daughter is 11, so far we have only encountered the occasional “literally”. I am hoping the infection misses us lol.
ha ha ha, very funny!!! I don’t suffer from this but my children are young so I will be on ‘like’ watch as they grow. However I do have to admit to being an occasional ‘Right’ virus sufferer. Sometimes I just feel it stamps authority on a moment, that you’re going to put your all into the task! Even if it is just making a cuppa 😉
Lol. I’m a major carrier of the “like” virus. I hear myself but I can’t stop lol. You also missed my hubbies ultimate bugbear and something I’ve tried to stop but I have been afflicted with the “saink” virus too ?
This word used to drive my dad INSANE!
So funny- cause his griping over “like” is one of my solid childhood memories.
That you for raising awareness for this awful condition. I have found the cure! My oldest daughter at only 6 years old came down with this affliction. However, she is cured thanks to the penalty jar. She no longer says like because she knows that will have to put money in my jar. I am glad that she is cured but the like jar used to buy me a nice bottle of wine on a Saturday! 😉
Flump is, like, totally guilty of this. I blame all those silly YouTube Kids clips she watches!!!
Love this post Jane, I couldn’t help but lough out loud. Well done.
Hi Jane. This is a good one! It’s funny how words become popular! It will be interesting to see what new phrases my little girl picks up when she starts school later this year #fortheloveofBLOG
Lets hope she doesn’t pick up any annoying ones!!
I am just like laughing so much, I know exactly what you mean! ?
I watched a programme recently and someone had a bad case of this virus, I had to turn off it was just like so annoying ?
Hahahaha!!!!! YES!!!! I *might* know a couple of people who have this affliction. LOL!!!! I seem to have been struck down with the ‘errrm virus’ — but it only seems to be prevalent when I’m vlogging!!!! Hahaha!! The rest of time, I don’t really notice it!!! 🙂
I’ve got the ‘You know’ virus and a smattering of the ‘like’ virus courtesy of Eldest Child!!!! Argh!