0

I heard this line in a documentary:

There's guys at the church that pat me on the back and say, "Way to be a warrior for Christ!"

This modified version of "way to go" strikes me as unusual. I may have seen "Way to be!" where "Way to go!" is normally used. But this is the first time I have heard the idiom modified with a longer phrase. Google seems to suggest this construction is not common at all. I can only find a singular attestation of "way to be a fighter [for...]", but I guess there are an unlimited number of possible sentences. Is "way to do something" idiomatic and actually said at all?

1

"Way to [do something]" is used in a wide variety of informal contexts to convey approval, and "way to be a ————" is an idiomatic and easily understandable (though perhaps less common) variant. However, you should note that such phrases are often used quite sarcastically – especially in popular culture, but also in real-life conversations when friends are bantering informally. Someone saying "way to be a warrior for Christ" might actually mean precisely the opposite of the phrase's literal meaning.

  • It is totally conceivable that those words were meant to be sarcastic, but the same can be said of "way to go!" or just about any utterance. The question is about the sentence construction. Some sourced/referenced examples would be very helpful, because I can't find many. – Eddie Kal Jun 6 '19 at 22:06
  • Yes, of course it's true that any utterance can be sarcastic, but for reasons that have to do with the extremely derivative nature of much of American popular culture, the sarcastic usage of "way to ————" has become so common as to be something of a cliché. That's why I thought the possibility of sarcastic intent was worth highlighting in my answer, though I do not think the usage in the video you linked to is sarcastic. (I'm having a hard time finding good usage examples – sarcastic or sincere – on the web myself, but if I do find any I'll edit them into my answer for you.) – Nanigashi Jun 6 '19 at 22:37

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.