“A misplaced modifier can make you an accidental comedian.”
I like hole-in-the wall bars but dark, dirty, and rundown drinks…no.
My friend Shupee, laminating business losses during early shutdowns due to the pandemic, presented me with a humorous mental picture…humorous and a bit X rated…but then that is the way my mind works. Instead of offering some sort of moral support, he got a goofy smile. What? Everyone will find out in a bit. First, I have to scurry down a pig trail looking for a rabbit hole.
“Abraham Lincoln wrote the Gettysburg address while traveling from Washington to Gettysburg on the back of an envelope.” A large envelope I guess, Ole Abe was a tall man.
Being a retired history teacher, I wondered…did I ever? I probably did. I remember a lot of stupid things I said…some on purpose. As a faux writer and a non-English major, I have found another reason for my anxiety level to increase. I wondered if my rabbit hole might turn out to be a buried landmine. As if bad analogies weren’t worry enough, now I have to worry about misplaced modifiers. As far as bad analogies, “The dew glistened like nose hair after a sneeze.” “As tight as a tick on a fat dog.” I actually used one of those, you can guess which.
My pig trail took me to Google, and there I found some of my favorite misplaced modifiers.
“Dressed in a diaper and drooling, Grandpa read a book to his granddaughter.” I’m a Granddad with a granddaughter and I am at an age I worry about diapers and drooling.
“The patient was referred to a psychologist with several emotional problems.” I suffer from clinical depression; do I really need a psychologist with more emotional problems than I have?
“David waited patiently behind a teenager with baggy jeans carrying a full load.” I’m cracking up a little.
“The homeowner chased the intruder wearing nothing but his underwear.” Was the intruder trying to do a load of wash while he was intruding?
“The waitress passed the platter to the guest that was heaped with tangy barbequed ribs.” Well, I have covered myself with BBQ sauce.
Okay back to my original pig trail and it is a bit risqué.
My friend lamented that he couldn’t afford to keep both of his workers, Doris or Jack. In his West Tennessee voice he lamented, “I don’t know what to do. I’m gonna have to lay Doris or Jack off.”
Smiling, I couldn’t help myself, commenting, “Well, I sure hope Doris doesn’t have a headache.”
He got it and I hope you do too.
Please leave any of your favorites in the comment section. I would love to hear them.
Most of my examples came from https://www.proofreadnow.com/blog/the-funny-business-of-misplaced-modifiers
Further of my meanderings can be found at https://www.amazon.com/Don-Miller/e/B018IT38GM?fbclid=IwAR3H8MbofI2YlIhiXG4jeByOO3vlOXPG1kGsP6xNJMnSfnA76bWPv3iaeQM
Image from Pinterest