Okay, when I came across the first really bad sentence on my local paper's site today*, I decided to ignore it. I mean, maybe I am being too picky. Sure, these people write for a living and the editors are specifically paid to look over these articles, but I don't intend to be mean about it. I know they have had a lot of layoffs over at the Post-Dispatch, and they clearly got rid of a lot of experienced (some might say qualified) people. So, I was going to just read on and get on with my life. Then I came across this gem:
Police arrested two of his sons -- ages 19 and 21. Police also took away a back of evidence.
What the heck is a back of evidence? Sure, I know they meant bag of evidence, so this may be quibbling, but really, why can't they say what they mean? It is not my job to interpret what the writer means, it is their job to be clear.
* In an article about goalball, a ball sport for blind people: And even though not all students at the Missouri School for the Blind play goalball, or are physically unable to because of other disabilities, the playing field remains even for players and spectators alike. I think it is pretty obvious that not all students at the Missouri School for the Blind are physically unable to (play) because of other disabilities, isn't it? Didn't the writer mean that even though not all students play, including some that have other physical disabilities that mean they are unable to play, the playing field is level? Whatever that means--the playing field is level for players and spectators alike? Except for those that can't play, I guess, and I have no idea what she means about the spectators.
And, in the same article: The kids who play goalball together since seventh grade form tight bonds,... I don't know the name of this problem, but it should be: The kids who have played goalball together since seventh grade have formed tight bonds, or Kids who play together for long times, some since seventh grade, form tight bonds, or something else. It would also help if we knew what grade these kids are in now, or if every team member has been on the team since seventh grade, which is implied but not stated.