With all of the shouting and controversy surrounding the election, we thought it might be a good time for a lighter—but still instructive—grammar topic this week. Today, we are repeating a classic from GrammarBook.com’s founder, Jane Straus, from March 2008.

When phrases or clauses are misplaced in a sentence, such that they don’t agree with the subject, sometimes funny or even embarrassing meanings and images will result. Danglers are difficult for us to spot when we write them because we can’t always see that what we have written is not what we meant to express.

Example: While walking across the street, the bus hit her.
Did the bus really walk across the street?

While she was walking across the street, the bus hit her. OR
The bus hit her while she was walking across the street.

Example: I have some pound cake that Mollie baked in my lunch bag.
Did Mollie actually bake the pound cake in my lunch bag?

Correction: In my lunch bag, I have some pound cake that Mollie baked.

Now that you are alerted to danglers, perhaps you will be able to appreciate some of the bloopers below (not all of which contain danglers) even more. Thank you to Hu O. for sending these.

  • The Fasting & Prayer Conference includes meals.
  • The sermon this morning: “Jesus Walks on the Water.” The sermon tonight: “Searching for Jesus.”
  • Ladies, don’t forget the rummage sale. It’s a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.
  • Don’t let worry kill you off–let the Church help.
  • Miss Charlene Mason sang “I Will Not Pass This Way Again” giving obvious pleasure to the congregation.
  • For those of you who have children and don’t know it, we have a nursery downstairs.
  • Next Thursday there will be tryouts for the choir. They need all the help they can get.
  • Irving B. and Jessie C. were married on October 24 in the church. So ends a friendship that began in their school days.
  • At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be “What Is Hell?” Come early and listen to our choir practice.
  • Eight new choir robes are currently needed due to the addition of several new members and to the deterioration of some older ones.

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