Sex & Dating | February 13, 2021 7:30 am

The Hottest Valentine’s Day Date: Couples’ COVID Testing

A pre-date COVID test is probably a good idea, but for some, it's become an actual date-night activity

covid testing dates
Your nearest COVID testing center is the hottest ticket in town.
Getty Images

In case you haven’t heard, Valentine’s Day is extra special this year. Why? Because it marks the last anniversary of a major pre-COVID holiday. After almost a full year of nostalgia for normal Thanksgivings and Christmases of yore, this Valentine’s Day will be the last time we have sit through a weird pandemic holiday and think, “Hey, last year this wasn’t a weird pandemic holiday, it was just a holiday.”

This time last year we were all busy celebrating Valentine’s Day, largely unaware of the terrifying fate that awaited us. You may have had plans to go to a restaurant or accompany your beloved to a live performance of some kind. But this year, the hottest ticket in town is your nearest COVID-19 testing center, apparently.

According to the New York Post, which for some reason has the authority to declare such things, getting “his and hers” COVID tests is “the latest NYC dating trend.” While this makes me deeply nostalgic for much simpler days when the Post declared chicken parm the hottest dating trend in the city rather than getting tested for a deadly virus, I can’t even say they’re wrong. As a single person in New York, I myself have been asked to get a pre-date COVID test by a potential romantic partner, and I’ve complied because this is just our lives now.

What’s weirder, however, is that according to the Post, some people are actually going with their dates to get a test, which seems to defeat the whole purpose. Recounting the tale of two ultimately ill-fated pandemic-daters, the Post writes: “The two agreed to meet at a rapid testing facility on the Upper West Side. While they waited for their results, they went for a drink nearby.”

This … makes no sense? The whole point of getting a pre-date COVID test is to do it before you go out with someone to ensure that you: A. Don’t infect your date and B. Don’t spread the virus to anyone else while you’re out. Going on a date to a COVID testing center with your date and then waiting for your results together at a bar seems to completely defeat the purpose.

Anyway, it’s a weird, difficult time to be dating. I do not in any way mean to discourage daters from getting a pre-date COVID test. But if you’re willing to get a COVID test for a date (which is a great idea!) maybe you should just do it alone, before the date. That’s all. Anyway, happy Valentine’s Day. I hope you’re not spending it in a COVID testing center.

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