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vibe check

noun compounding
1. Noun. a. An instance or process in which someone invites another to share his or her feelings. b. An instance in which someone evaluates the feelings, mood, or attitude of another with or without consent. c. An instance in which someone is hit with a blunt object, often as the result of a negative or failed evaluation of their vibes. 2. Verb. To evaluate the feelings, mood, or attitude of another with or without their consent. 3. Verb. To hit (someone) with a blunt object or otherwise assault (someone), often as the result of a negative or failed evaluation of one’s vibes. 4. Interjection. – used as a warning call before one performs a vibe check, either by evaluating the feelings, mood, or attitude of another or by hitting (someone) with a blunt object.
 
The term vibe check originated on the internet in mid-2019, originally denoting an instance in which someone invites another to share his or her feelings. It was used both as a noun and an interjection in this form, the interjection serving to invite the subject to share. Since its inception, vibe check’s definition has evolved tremendously. This original meaning is almost never used anymore; Instead, vibe check now refers to any evaluation of another’s feelings, mood or attitude, often because the subject’s vibes are suspicious or negative. Vibe check became the key phrase in a pervasive internet meme that featured examples of historical figures or movie characters being struck with blunt objects or even murdered (for example, Cain & Abel or Julius Caesar & the Roman senate), implying that the attacking party had performed a vibe check on the attacked, found that the attitude or feelings of the subject were negative, and thus sought to punish the subject. Through a metonymic association between the actual checking of vibes and the violent results, vibe check has also come to mean the act or instance of suddenly, forcefully attacking someone, often with a blunt object. It also came to be used as a warning call preceding an attack with a blunt object.
Etymology : formed from a compound of the two English words vibe and check. Vibe from a clipping of English vibration, from Latin past participle of vibrare meaning to shake + check from English chek meaning a check in chess, going back to Persian shah king.
Source : (1a) “To be honest, therapy is just a hundred-dollar vibe check.” (from a Twitter post, 9/25/19) (1b & 1c) “You call it a near death experience, I call it a vibe check from God.” (from a Twitter post, 10/1/19) (2) “A true vibe check doesn’t have rules… or correct spelling.” (my brother’s friend, 11/21/19) (3) “My professor referred to the theater of Pompey as ‘the place where Caesar got vibe checked by a bunch of senators’ and I lost it.” (from a Tumblr post, 10/16/19) (3) “Those reflex tests doctors give you where they hit your knee with that small hammer are just medical vibe checks.” (from a Tumblr post, 11/7/29) (4) “Hey Candi, vibe check!” (friend at Jones College, prior to hitting Candi with a roll of paper towels, 11/20/19)
Last modified: 11 December 2019


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