Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Sentence of the morning

Quoth the AP:

Schrenker lived a high-flying life as an experienced recreational pilot with the nerves to pull off aerial stunts and an investment manager.

Pulled off many an investment manager in his day, no doubt.

Easy fix: Put another "as" after the conjunction. Slightly more complicated but better fix: Put the simple part of the compound (the one without all those annoying prepositional and infinitive phrases and stuff) first, so it doesn't appear to go with "aerial stunts."

Reporters work in a hurry. Editors slow 'em down. Fixing minor sloppiness in AP stories is good practice for fixing major sloppiness in the stuff you are expected to pay attention to.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Strayhorn said...

Pulled off investment managers?

I invoke Rule 34 . . .

11:30 AM, January 13, 2009  
Blogger The Ridger, FCD said...

Yes, putting the heavy component last is the natural structure. But, if info structure wants "investment manager" last, then punch it up a bit, eg

Schrenker lived a high-flying life as an experienced recreational pilot with the nerves to pull off aerial stunts -- and he was also investment manager.

or

Schrenker lived a high-flying life as an experienced recreational pilot with the nerves to pull off aerial stunts who was also an investment manager.

5:11 PM, January 13, 2009  

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