Read the following passage, which contains some underlined or numbered words or phrases. Each of the answer choices contains alternatives for the underlines; choose the one that fits best grammatically or stylistically. If you think the original is the best answer, choose Choice ‘A’, or NO CHANGE.
Questions about specific parts of the passage or about the passage as a whole are identified by numbers only, not underlines. These will be associated with specific questions.
Okay to be Annoying
In a landmark 2014 decision, the (1) city of Grand Rapids Michigan repealed a city ordinance stating, “No person shall
willfully annoy another person.” It’s now quite legal, on public transportation, to repeatedly kick the seat in front of
you, talk loudly on your cellphone in a restaurant; jump right into an elevator with 3-day old gym clothes after a strenuous
workout – oh, and push all the buttons while giggling; and loudly share YouTube videos of “Annoying Orange,” while
sitting in a cybercafé. A “Annoying Orange” burgeoning list of annoying behaviors now allowed in Michigan came with the
repeal of a 38-year-old law that City Attorney Catherine Mish is recommending. In an interview with the Grand Rapids
Press, she said the wording of the ordinance was, “unconstitutional in terms of being vague” and “unenforceable.” Ms Mish
also said to ABC News that, annoyance is in the eye of the beholder” and annoying behavior is “subject to a variety of
But Michigan residents, at any rate, will be grateful the repeal of this “annoying” law does not allow obstructing someone
in public, and still denied anyone from engaging in assault, battery, molestation, or the reckless endangerment of the life,
health and well-being of any person. So, citizens of Grand Rapids, whine all the time, photobomb whenever possible, pick
your nose, throw tantrums, use rude hand gestures, scrape your fingernails down the chalkboard, or just in general, enjoy
being a deliberately obnoxious jerk.
City Attorney Mish scrutinized the city code for other archaic or overreaching ordinances. In the previous year, a
prohibition against riding your horse on a sidewalk was lifted, and you can now rest assured that you will not go to jail for
failing to return a library book. "We have been a city since 1850 and have a two-volume code book that is over 5,000
pages" she told NBC News. "It's like sediment—they keep piling up in layers, and every 40 years we have to weed it out."
The NBC online article goes on to say, “One law that she doesn't plan to change, despite protests from gun advocates, is a
1960s-era law banning the carrying of guns in the city.”
Sadly, this foresight and enthusiasm for legal change is not shared in other parts of the country. In Arkansas, it’s still a
Class-B felony to wrestle a bear, or “knowingly promote, engage in or be employed in a bear wrestling match” which begs
the question of how one could wrestle a bear unknowingly. Kentucky will levy a hefty fine on pet owners if their pets
“molest passing cars,” although, it is unclear exactly what constitutes the molestation of a vehicle. Florida shockingly
prohibits residents from having pet elephants, and just in case you’re musing that only the Deep South has strange laws,
in New York it’s illegal to hold a puppet show from your window. Yes, it is illegal in New York to mount a “performance of
puppets or other figures, ballet or other dancing, a comedy or farce show with moving figures” in a window with a public
Created for Albert.io. September 2014
In a landmark 2014 decision, the (1) city of Grand Rapids Michigan repealed a city ordinance stating, “No person shall willfully annoy another person.”