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6rant6's avatar

Has "go ahead" become the new "ya know?"?

Asked by 6rant6 (13629 points ) March 13th, 2012

I listen to a lot of videos that give instructions and advice. I find it irritating when they say, “go ahead and….” I mean, come on! I know you’re giving instructions already.

I just finished listening to a 7 minute video. I counted, “go ahead” ten times.

Yag!

Does anyone else find this as annoying as I do? Go ahead and answer below.

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25 Answers

MrItty's avatar

I don’t understand your question. “Go ahead” means “it is now okay to do this.” “Ya know” means “Do you agree with and/or understand what I’m saying?”. The two have nothing to do with each other.

6rant6's avatar

I’m saying in the sense that these two phrases both carry no content value they are alike. (Yes, in theory they could, but with overuse they don’t.) I now hear, “go ahead” more than “you know.” I find them both irritating. Clear now?

MrItty's avatar

Clear, but I disagree. As I stated, they both have completely distinct and useful meanings. So I disagree that they “carry no content value”.

DominicX's avatar

“Go ahead” most likely once had literal meaning; it’s now become entirely idiomatic and with the way I use it, simply means “yes” and may refer to something that doesn’t involve all that much going in the forward direction :)

“Ya know” is the classic tag question making sure people are actually paying attention to what you’re saying. I’ve noticed that both phrases are often apostrophized (word?): g’head and y’know.

Ya know? Or as we say in the Bay Area: yadidifeelme?

mangeons's avatar

@MrItty I’m pretty sure they’re talking about how people use them. And I agree, they are overused. My AP US History teacher is a big fan of using “ya know”, “alright”, and sometimes “go ahead” just as unnecessary space fillers between words. If he was using them for their literal meaning, they would make no sense in the context. They often carry no content value in the way they are used these days.

zenvelo's avatar

A friend married a girl from South Philly about 25 years ago. She and her family and friends all used the phrase “g’head” in the general sense of “okay”. Arnold Horshack also said it in Welcome Back Kotter.

6rant6's avatar

@MrItty What do you think the content value is? Go ahead and tell me that. Ten times in seven minutes. I’m following an instructional video, mind you. So it’s like, you know, they’re trying to coach me into not going catatonic, you know?

MrItty's avatar

@6rant6 Please update your question text. You clearly did not mean to ask opinions. What you meant was “I believe Go Ahead has become the new Ya Know. Please agree with me now.”

I have already stated what the meanings of those two phrases are. I’m sorry you disagree. But your disagreement does not change my opinions.

CWOTUS's avatar

No problemo.

wundayatta's avatar

I’m not familiar with the “go ahead” locution. But it seems to me that if it is an instruction video, then it is entirely appropriate to tell someone to “go ahead” when it is time for them to take the next step. I believe that saying “go ahead” is similar to saying “start now” or “commence” or something like that.

“Ya know” is a way of checking to make sure someone is listening or paying attention. Sometimes is is also about checking to see if someone agrees with you. Some people require constant conversational feedback. Others don’t require much at all. You know?

blueiiznh's avatar

I do not find them irritating . To me they are simply a verbal queue mechanism.
To me, they do hold value.

LuckyGuy's avatar

@6rant6 I don’t know if this is a regional thing or not, but I know exactly what you mean. I find it annoying too. Why say it?
“Go ahead and pick your cupcake. Go ahead and peel the paper off. Go ahead and bite the cupcake. Go ahead and swallow…”
All they need to say is: “Pick your cupcake, peel off the paper, and eat.” Simple.
I figure they can’t help it. Ya know? Go ahead and relax.

6rant6's avatar

@wundayatta If you haven’t noticed the “go ahead” phenomenon, I can understand that it seems as if it might actually mean something. Here’s the video I saw this morning. You can go ahead and watch it yourself and go ahead and see that there is nothing conveyed by the phrase. I resisted posting it earlier because I don’t want to promote something I find so irritating (although the recipe looks good.)

I’m beginning to think it’s part of NLP because so many of you have not noticed it. Which makes it all the more irritating, you know?

Aethelflaed's avatar

I understand how annoying the speech patterns of others can be. The one that really gets on my nerves is that verbal tick in which people must constantly vent about other people’s speech patterns, like they’ve got nothing better to totally lose their shit over.

6rant6's avatar

@Aethelflaed Or even worse, the posers who pretend the topic isn’t worth talking about and can’t stop themselves from posting.

Aethelflaed's avatar

@6rant6 I actually think the topic is worth talking about (though you could leave the name-calling out). But there’s a difference between saying, ‘I’ve noticed this linguistic change, is this just me, what’s going on here,’ and, ‘everyone must conform to my personal standards or I’m going to strangle them’. Yes, we have speech patterns, it’s not a new phenomenon. But when they really get on your nerves, like this clearly is getting on yours, it’s probably time to figure out some relaxation techniques for everyday life.

The_Idler's avatar

Thankfully we don’t get much of this shit in England.

North Americans are always doing this ”[statement]... right?” thing.
“Y’know?” is blitzed out constantly.
I don’t hear much “Go ahead” from normal North Americans in the UK, but it seems to be very popular in American advertising and other media.

I’ve noticed a couple of (British) lecturers constantly saying “alriiiight?” after every sentence, man that is annoying.

People often use “mate” as filler here though. Not so often in completely nonsensical situations, but still commonly when speaking to someone with whom they have no relationship. Oh and of course, “like”.

6rant6's avatar

@Aethelflaed Same applies to you. “The one that really gets on my nerves…”

The topic is worth talking about? Can you please pick one side of your mouth to talk out of?

CWOTUS's avatar

It’s a simple speech affectation; that’s all. Be thankful that you don’t have to live with it.

I’m staying with my uncle temporarily as I’ve mentioned many times and I make most of his meals for him. He eats in the living room in a chair near mine.

With every bite of his meal, and every bite of his cookies and ice cream for dessert, he murmurs “Mm hmm”. Every. Single. Bite.

Nearly every speech that he originates begins with, “I’ll tell you the truth…” or “I’m sorry, but…” Almost without exception.

I want to smother him with a pillow.

Fortunately for all of us, my shift is over this week. His daughter and son-in-law have gotten back to the house today (and I didn’t have to cook!), so I’m back to my own house in a couple of days.

Ela's avatar

Go ahead? Who you callin’ a goat head?!

wundayatta's avatar

That is kind of annoying, isn’t it. I have experienced that with people on the phone who are doing some kind of customer support and want me to fill out forms or follow some instructions with respect to troubleshooting.

MollyMcGuire's avatar

I’ve never heard anyone say “go ahead” in the same context one would use “ya know.”

trailsillustrated's avatar

Now this is interesting to me, as an Australian who’s been here, 12 years now. I haven’t heard the ‘go ahead’ thing. It might be regional. But just for arguments sake, a thing I have heard, which makes me crazy, is, ’ I’m gonna let you…” or , “ok, I’m gonna go ahead and let you….” it’s usually something which I have no desire to do and it’s the weirdest thing ever. It usually has nothing to do whatsoever with anything I am actually doing or interested in doing. Just sayin.

blueiiznh's avatar

My Father would say “Gourd Head”

CWOTUS's avatar

I am your father, @blueiiznh. Intoned in my best impersonation of James Earl Jones, which even on a good day is pretty weak.

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