Everything is permitted, as in You're wearing sneakers to the office?—Why not? Anything goes these days. This idiom began life as everything goes, which appeared in George Meredith's novel The Egoist (1879). In America anything was the preferred word, which gained further currency with Cole Porter's use of the term as the title of his 1934 song and musical comedy, Anything Goes!
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.
How to use anything goes in a sentence
We have entered the “anything goes” phase of religious exemptions.Catholic Church: Religious Freedom Trumps Civil Rights | Jay Michaelson | November 23, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
When I first heard about the sport, I assumed that it was a “no holds barred” cage match where pretty much anything goes.Jesus Said Knock You Out: In ‘Fight Church’ Christians Beat Thy Neighbor | Bryan Storkel | September 16, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Is this a concession in the land of the anything goes world of Juggalos?A Report From the Misunderstood Gathering of the Juggalos | Steve Miller | July 28, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
He shook his head knowingly, as if to intone the word ‘New York,’ were to intone a universal spirit of ‘anything goes’.
But if anything goes wrong, look out—and not just in the region, but on the Potomac too.
When anything goes out of the frying-pan into the fire, it is usually productive of interesting by-products.The Gold Bat | P. G. Wodehouse
You must leave me some address, though, in case anything goes wrong during your absence.The Pagan's Cup | Fergus Hume
By keeping your hand on the clutch lever you may stop forward motion instantly if anything goes wrong.Farm Engines and How to Run Them | James H. Stephenson
I'll pay your boss for the whole flock if anything goes wrong.The Heart of the Desert | Honor Willsie Morrow
If anything goes wrong, I've got to have time to get from under.Makers of Madness | Hermann Hagedorn