Which One Is Correct?

SC-Word-CLoud

Only one of the following sentences is correct. Can you spot the errors in the others?

  1. The general consensus is that Trump has a personality disorder.
  2. The reason Canadians aren’t surprised is because they think Americans are crazy anyway.
  3. Marco’s elaborate plans were all for not.
  4. It could of been him who won, but it wasn’t.
  5. Mother is very upset about Aunt Edna’s decision to vote Republican, so be sure not to mention it around she and Pa.
  6. I didn’t have the heart to tell Mort that the cookies he was eating were the dogs biscuits.
  7. Grating the cheese, Bart’s knuckles got badly bloodied.
  8. Gloria refused to tell her parents where she found the cat at.
  9. The GOP’s approval rating has sunken lower than Edmonton’s mean winter temperature.
  10. Marvin thinks that you shouldn’t end a sentence with a preposition. I wonder where he got that idea from?
  11. Buy something healthy for dinner, i.e., fish or very lean meat.
  12. Constantly searching the internet is destroying my attention… Good heavens, I have to trim my nose hairs!

 

Answers:

  1. The consensus is that… The use of “general” with “consensus” is a redundancy. A consensus is general by definition.
  2. “The reason is…because…” is redundant. Revised: The reason Canadians aren’t surprised is that they think Americans are crazy anyway.
  3. Marco’s elaborate plans were all for naught.
  4. It could have been he who won… Rapid pronunciation of “have” misleads some to write it as “of.” In formal English, the subject pronoun (I, he, she) is required after any form of the verb “to be.”
  5. …be sure not to mention it around her and Pa. The preposition “around” requires the object pronoun “her.”
  6. …the cookies he was eating were the dog’s biscuits.
  7. This is the infamous dangling modifier. The modifying phrase “Grating the cheese” has nothing it can logically modify in the rest of the sentence unless Bart’s knuckles were doing the grating. Revised: Grating the cheese, Bart badly bloodied his knuckles.
  8. This sentence shouldn’t end with “at.” This has nothing to do with the bogus rule against ending a sentence with a preposition. It is rather the case that “at” here is unnecessary and adds nothing to the meaning.
  9. President’s job approval rating has sunk… “Sunken” is an obsolete past participle of the verb “to sink,” but it still lives as an adjective: sunken cheeks.
  10. Marvin may have got the idea from a bad source, but the question is not where he got it from, but simply where he got it.
  11. Buy something healthy for dinner, e.g., fish or very lean meat. The abbreviation e.g. means “for example.” The abbreviation i.e. means “that is (to say).
  12. Correct. The ellipsis (…) is used to represent an interruption in thought.
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