Tamsin Constable

Timber!

There’s a writing thing (yes, ‘thing’; don’t start,) I call the ‘Crashing Sentence’. It’s often long, and twisty. You usually have to read it twice, or more. If you look away, then look back sharply, you may catch it by surprise and believe you have startled some meaning from it. But, I’m sorry to tell you, you won’t have. For there is no meaning in a Crashing Sentence.

Crashing Sentences are those that, when someone like me comes along, sighing theatrically, tumble down the moment their own meaningless is uprooted. Edited in plain English, they wind up saying absolutely diddly squat. Bear in mind, dear reader, that someone has taken the time (ie, it has cost money) to construct the Collapsing Sentence in the first place.

Here’s a great one I had:

“We will improve our efficiency and effectiveness through introducing new and improved ways of working.”

Now I reckon this means:

“We will work better by working better.”

TIMBER!!!

(Yes, three exclamation marks. Like I said, don’t start).

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