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Thursday, August 4, 2011

Criminal Sentence 582: Juvenile Dad

Heard on a TV show (a father was talking about discovering his daughter's blindness):

"At three months old, I began to notice something."

Now that's a young father! "At three months old, I ..." The "I" of this sentence (the father, who is speaking) is not that age!

A better way:

"I began to notice something when she was three months old."


Warsaw Will said...

I'm sorry, but are we really meant to worry about dangling modifiers in unscripted conversation now.

This poor man was talking about a traumatic time in his life. He probably had rather more important things on his mind than what he did with his modifiers. Especially as the meaning is crystal clear.

Probably nobody even noticed but you, because that's your speciality.

It's one thing to go after professional writers and publishers, it's quite another to criticise Joe Public speaking in informal conversation.

Sorry, but this smacks to me of the Grammar Police. I wish you'd leave this sort of thing to the apostrophe brigade. You're better than that.

The Sentence Sleuth said...

OK, Will. You got me. I am very anal!