One Day, This Too Shall Go Ahead And Pass

Have you noticed how, in some sectors, the office personnel will supplement every verb with another verb, viz., “go ahead”.  “Okay, Sir, you can go ahead and have a seat”; or “I’ll go ahead and make you an appointment”; or “You can go ahead and come with me.”

This habitual “go-aheadiness” is rampant in the medical industry, but I have heard it as well in other parts of town; restaurants, check-out counters, banks, etc.  When I was kid away back when, we used “go ahead” in a particular context, as in, “My tire’s low, but I’m going to go ahead and ride the bike anyway.”  The words often followed an introductory phrase as in, “Although we’ve failed many times, we’re ready to go ahead and try again.”

Now, we find “go-aheads” everywhere.  I can’t help but wonder if the psychology of our modern world is expressing something quick deep.  Could it be that what we are really saying before every verb is, “Although the world’s falling apart and we all may die any minute, I’ll go ahead and make you an appointment anyway!”  If that is what is going on, at least we have a reason for the habitual verbiage augmentation.

I decided I had to bring this up after a “go-ahead” incident last week.  The medical aide was taking me to the doctor’s exam room when she said, “Okay, Mr. Moncrief, you can go ahead and follow me.” I couldn’t stand it any more.  I stopped in the hallway and demanded to know, “Ah, Miss, how can I do that?  How can I go ahead and at the same time follow you?  She looked at me blankly; but then, thank God, she smiled.  She got it!  “Oh, ya….” she said.

I felt in some little way, I had made the world a saner and safer place.