It’s now commonplace that people say like like a zillion times in the average sentence, right? And the number of times they say “like” is in inverse proportion to their age, right? So if you’re a teenager, right?, every other word will be “like,” but if you’re an old person, over 40 right?, you might only use “like” once or twice in a sentence, right?
I listen to more online classes and lectures than I did pre-COVID, right? And some podcasts, and YouTube videos, too, right?, and I’ve noticed, right?, that people now say “right?” (with a rising inflection) almost as often as they used to say “like.” And it doesn’t seem to be related to age, right? Or education, or profession, right?
I listened to an hour-long podcast this morning from the radio program Hidden Brain where the guest, a PhD professor, stuck in the gratuitous “right?” approximately four hundred and fifty-two BILLION times during her presentation. I zoom with an online meditation class every day that has a short introduction followed by a period of silent sitting. Many of the presenters, right?, also insert “right?” right in the middle of sentences and phrases. These are teachers, authors, clergy, therapists–people who do a lot of public speaking in their jobs. They sound like middle schoolers when in addition to “right?” as every other word, they also throw in plenty of “like” and “you know” AND begin all their sentences with “so.”
I need a drink of water.