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Thursday, August 21, 2008

Criminal Sentence 81: Where to Put Descriptions

From a review of a restaurant:

"The egg rolls arrived first, cool spring rolls in opaque wontons, stuffed with shrimp and fresh crunchy vegetables."

And later in the same article:

"A huge bowl of beef noodle soup is easily shared, packed with delicate rice noodles and slices of beef."

Both of these sentences contain descriptions that I feel are in the wrong place. The descriptive parts should be right next to the noun they're describing, so here are the sentences as I think they should be:

"The egg rolls, cool spring rolls in opaque wontons, stuffed with shrimp and fresh crunchy vegetables, arrived first."
"A huge bowl of beef noodle soup, packed with delicate rice noodles and slices of beef, is easily shared."
Even better, we can remove the passive voice in the second sentence:
"You and a friend can easily share a huge bowl of beef noodle soup, which is packed with delicate rice noodles and slices of beef."

When you describe something, make sure you put the description next to what you're describing.

1 comment:

Matt said...
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