ACT English 3.4 Sentence Structure
ACT English: Sentence Structure Drill 3, Problem 4. How should the sentence be changed to make it as clear as possible?
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his eyes to himself. Could this be the beginning of Taken 3? Time will tell'
Anyway, let's take a look at choice (A) and see how the original sentence did with its modifying phrases.
We're not sure who the phrase, "wearing dark
glasses," is supposed be talking about. Is it the mysterious girl, or the creepy guy
who's staring at her?
The placement of the modifying phrase and the fact that commas separate it makes it
impossible to tell who plunked down some cash at the Sunglass Hut. So, we can nix choice
(B) makes it completely clear who's wearing the sunglasses with "at the girl wearing dark
However, it is confusing who exactly is standing by the vending machine.
Choice (B) gets the boot.
Choice (C) is incorrect because "machine" should be secondary to the object of the action.
The vending machine isn't the important thing here; it's the girl who has caught this creeper's
attention. Therefore it's awkward to give the vending machine priority in the sentence.
Choice (D) paints a clear picture of this whole sinister scenario. By placing the phrase,
"who was wearing dark glasses," directly after "girl" we know for sure that she's the one
Because "by the vending machine" isn't separated by a comma, it's completely clear that it's
modifying girl by telling us where exactly she's standing.
Quick tip: if you're seriously interested in somebody, it's not the best idea to stare
at him or her creepily before approaching.