Odd Language #176: Back Home

I wrote this sentence recently and then noticed something odd about it: “I was doing something for an organisation back home.”

The issue: As with many of these Odd Language items, a modifier is awkwardly placed. Was the action done back home or is the organisation from back home? “I was doing something back home for an organisation.” or “I was doing something for an organisation from back home.”?

Many times, words can be dropped out of English sentences with no loss in meaning as in “I think that you are right.” can be trimmed to “I think you are right.” The above shows yet another case where this is not safe, and the word should be kept (“from” in the second version).