Texas Bull Rope, Lights Out, No Holds Barred Grammar Answers!

Thank you to the brave souls who posted their answers to the first ever Texas Bull Rope, Lights Out, No Holds Barred Grammar Challenge. Church Lady, decaf, Jerry, ello, Courtney, Stella, Angela, and Charles entered the ring with great boldness and power. To all of you: You are as witty as you are smart!

And now, without further ado--the answers!


1. What is a gerund?

A gerund is a noun made of the ing form of a verb: Eating donuts is healthy!

2. Choose the error-free sentence:
a. The dog wagged it’s tail.
b. The dog wagged its tail.
The correct answer is b. The first answer is incorrect because it’s always means it is.

3. What is the correct format for a three point ellipsis?
The correct format for a three point ellipsis is space, point, space, point, space, point, space and then the next word. For example, “I don’t . . . I can’t . . . I won’t love you!


4. Choose the error-free sentence:
a. Between you and I, she really could do better than him.
b. Between you and me, she really could do better than him.
The correct answer is b. Trust me. Or check this link.

5. Give an example of the future perfect progressive tense.
Okay, I cheated on this one! I knew those tenses had some really compounded terms, so I looked for the most compounded, confounding tense I could find. Here’s an example of the future perfect progressive tense: By midnight, I will have been surfing the ’net for seven hours.

6. Choose the error free sentence:
a. John has twin sisters. His sister, Elizabeth, is a model.
b. John has twin sisters. His sister Elizabeth is a model.
The correct answer is b. Because John has two sisters, Elizabeth is a restrictive appositive--you wouldn’t know which sister the narrator was talking about unless Elizabeth was named. It's considered necessary information and is therefore not set off by commas.

7. What is the subjunctive mood?
Ah, the subjunctive mood--my favorite! It’s basically a fancy term for an if statement: I would have a clean house if I weren’t a writer. The subjunctive mood includes forms that state something other than the reality: We wish he were normal.

8. Choose the error-free sentence:
a. John has twin sisters. Elizabeth is the prettiest one.
b. John has twin sisters. Elizabeth is the prettier one.
The correct answer is b. When comparing only two, use –er; three or more, use –est.

9. The following sentence has an error. What is it?
After vomiting, check the child's temperature.
Dangling modifier! After the child vomits, check the child’s temperature.

10. I should of thought of a harder question for number ten. What do you think?
I should have thought of a harder question for number ten.

8 comments:

Charles Gramlich said...

As I suspected, I'm a bit grammatically challenged.

Danette Haworth said...

Charles,

Your answers to the original post cracked me up! How is cousin Gerund?

Church Lady said...

Commas slay me.

Virginia Lee said...

Gah! The should of combo sends me round the twist. And I too am comma challenged. They are my worst thing as I tend to overuse them.

I'll say one thing Danette, the children reading your books will at least be seeing decent grammar! That's more than I can say for some of the adult books I've had my hands on recently.

Danette Haworth said...

Church Lady,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,

Virginia Lee,
Ha! It's VERY easy to accidentally write should of because the sound is correct, even to a writer's ear. Tricky stuff!

Mary Witzl said...

Oh, crap! The minute I turn my back, you throw a pop quiz which I could have ACED with my eyes closed, hands tied behind my back, etc -- and I didn't even know it!

I used to teach English, spent years rewriting and translating, and finally was a language police (rewriter and sort-of editor of educational texts) for a large prep school. We did stuff like this all day long, all year round.

The Japanese teachers' all-time favorite thing was asking their students to explain how this grammatically correct sentence was ambiguous:

"The kitten was too little to eat."

Great, huh? 'The kitten' can either be interpreted as the subject or the object here.

Next time give me a shout! No -- I'd better link with you so that next time I don't miss out!

LindaBudz said...

Darn, I came late to the game, but I would of been 9 for 10.......I didn't even realize there was a correct way to format an ellipsis. And if I was to have taken a guess, I would of guessed wrong. But I was golden on the rest (really!).

LindaBudz said...

Oh, wait, actually, that future perfect progressive one tripped me up, too ... so make that 8 for 10!