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# Correct Usage of Being

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14 Nov 2011, 20:25
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Charles Lindbergh, for his attempt at a solo transatlantic flight, was very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he therefore refused to carry even a pound of mail, despite being offered \$1,000 to do so.
A. Charles Lindbergh, for his attempt at a solo transatlantic flight, was very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he therefore
B. When Charles Lindbergh was attempting his solo transatlantic flight, being very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he
C. Since he was very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he was attempting his solo transatlantic flight, so Charles Lindbergh
D. Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason that Charles Lindbergh
E. Very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight, Charles Lindbergh

Source: GMATPrep

Experts please explain why option D is wrong. I found D similar to a officially correct sentence below:

Being heavily committed to a course of action, especially one that has worked well in the past, is likely to make an executive miss signs of incipient trouble or misinterpret them when they do appear.
This is a correct answer picked from OG12 SC question. What is the difference in the sentence structure between this sentence and option D mentioned above

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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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15 Nov 2011, 00:04
[quote="sungoal"]
D. Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason that Charles Lindbergh
E. Very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight, Charles Lindbergh

Based on my understanding Being in any sentence in GMAT is always wrong. But sometime you do get one with Being like u mentioned. It is not possible to compare the two sentences you have mentioned.

The only mistrake I can spot in sentence 'D' above is that both 'Being' and 'was the reason' gives the same meaning so redundant & it is ruled out. E is the correct one.
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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15 Nov 2011, 10:34
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It is a wrong impression that "being" is always incorrect in GMAT. Yes "being" may add some extra baggage in the sentence and hence may push it to become wordy. But it does not imply that we should outright reject a choice that uses "being".

Check out question 101 in OG12. Correct answer has the structure:
Being heavily committed to a course of action...is likely to make an executive miss signs of trouble...
Here "being" is integral to the meaning of the sentence. It is the action of "being heavily committed..." that makes it likely for the executive to miss the signs...

Likewise, in the GMATprep question in discussion, choice D is not incorrect just because "being" is used. It is incorrect because it is unnecessarily wordy.

Wordy - Choice D - Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason that Charles Lindbergh refused to carry even a pound of mail, despite being offered \$1,000 to do so.
Precise - Choice E - Very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight, Charles Lindberghrefused to carry even a pound of mail, despite being offered \$1,000 to do so

Lets see a simple example to illustrate the difference between D and E of the GMATPrep question:
Like D = Being very tired after a sleepless night was the reason Tim took the day off. - wordy and hence incorrect
Like E = Very tired after a sleepless night, Tim took the day off. - Precise and correct

As you can see E is precise and hence correct. But D is not grammatically incorrect. It is more wordy.

Now check out this sentence. It is like the correct choice in OG12#101.

Being fat was the reason Mary lacked confidence in her teenage years.
I actually cannot write an alternate version here just by deleting "being" and a few other words. The sentence with "being" is actually correct.. Here as with correct choice in OG12#101, "being" is required to communicate the meaning of the sentence.

So "being" is correct. It just depends on the context. Sometimes its essential to the meaning and sometimes it just adds more weight to the sentence and hence makes the sentence wordy.

Hope this helps.

Payal
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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15 Nov 2011, 15:45
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To clarify egmat's response:

In the bolded sentence in the op, the word 'being' is the subject of the sentence. "Being heavily committed...is likely to." This is appropriate, since we are in fact discussing the state of being heavily commited and don't have any way to shorten this construction.

However, the sentence in the question posted is discussing Charles Lindberg. Saying that "Being reluctant...was the reason" makes Lindberg's reluctance the subject of the sentence, rather than Lindberg himself. In addition to being wordy, this construction actively detracts from the meaning of the sentence by shifting the focus of discussion to a tangential subject.

Hope this helps!
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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09 Jun 2012, 10:16
wow...what great post. thanks a ton to egmat and kaplan gmat instructor. its really helpful
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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07 Aug 2012, 16:58
Quote:
To clarify egmat's response:

In the bolded sentence in the op, the word 'being' is the subject of the sentence. "Being heavily committed...is likely to." This is appropriate, since we are in fact discussing the state of being heavily commited and don't have any way to shorten this construction.

However, the sentence in the question posted is discussing Charles Lindberg. Saying that "Being reluctant...was the reason" makes Lindberg's reluctance the subject of the sentence, rather than Lindberg himself. In addition to being wordy, this construction actively detracts from the meaning of the sentence by shifting the focus of discussion to a tangential subject.

Hope this helps!

This explanation is misleading and grammatically wrong.

In both sentences, "Being" is the beginning of the subject--but not all of it.

Being heavily committed to a course of action, especially one that has worked well in the past, is likely to make an executive miss signs of incipient trouble or misinterpret them when they do appear.

Here the subject is "Being heavily committed to a course of action."

Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason ...

Here the subject is NOT "Lindbergh's reluctance" (whatever that would mean) but rather "Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight"

The problem is simple: the subject contains too much material and is therefore unwieldy. In particular, "when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight" should be removed from the subject and given its own independent position in the sentence.

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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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07 Aug 2012, 19:56
GrammarRules wrote:
Quote:
To clarify egmat's response:

In the bolded sentence in the op, the word 'being' is the subject of the sentence. "Being heavily committed...is likely to." This is appropriate, since we are in fact discussing the state of being heavily commited and don't have any way to shorten this construction.

However, the sentence in the question posted is discussing Charles Lindberg. Saying that "Being reluctant...was the reason" makes Lindberg's reluctance the subject of the sentence, rather than Lindberg himself. In addition to being wordy, this construction actively detracts from the meaning of the sentence by shifting the focus of discussion to a tangential subject.

Hope this helps!

This explanation is misleading and grammatically wrong.

In both sentences, "Being" is the beginning of the subject--but not all of it.

Being heavily committed to a course of action, especially one that has worked well in the past, is likely to make an executive miss signs of incipient trouble or misinterpret them when they do appear.

Here the subject is "Being heavily committed to a course of action."

Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason ...

Here the subject is NOT "Lindbergh's reluctance" (whatever that would mean) but rather "Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight"

The problem is simple: the subject contains too much material and is therefore unwieldy. In particular, "when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight" should be removed from the subject and given its own independent position in the sentence.
Hi GrammarRules,

I'm going to have to disagree with you here! "Lindberg's reluctance" is not grammatically equivalent to "Being very reluctant....etc.", you're right, but it's LOGICALLY equivalent. And neither version is concise or desirable--talking about Lindberg's reluctance or Lindberg's being reluctant is a clunky distraction from what SHOULD be a discussion about Lindberg himself! (though I'll admit, "tangential subject" was probably not the best choice of words here)
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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24 May 2013, 02:32
Whats the correct answer in that case?

I find it to be E.

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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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12 Jul 2015, 09:40
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Correct Usage of "being":
Basically, "being" is ok when there are no acceptable alternative formulations that DON'T use it.

To be more precise, "being" can be ok as long as at least one of the following 2 conditions obtains:

(1) it is part of a PASSIVE-VOICE construction (note that such constructions require a form of "to be", so, if the passive voice is in the -ing form, that form will manifest as "being");
or
(2) it is used as a ING noun (i.e., the action of "being something" is treated as a NOUN in the sentence).
most, but not all, of these nouns form of a construction in the passive voice, as discussed in #1 above.
examples:
During the 1950s, as part of their therapy, young polio victims learning to live with their disabilities were helped to practice falling, so that they could learn to fall without being hurt.(source: gmat prep)
(again, passive voice ING noun)

According to one expert, the cause of genetic irregularities in many breeds of dog is not so much that dogs are being bred for looks or to meet other narrow criteria as that the breeds have relatively few founding members. (source: gmat prep)
(passive; not ING noun)

Being heavily committed to a course of action, especially one that has worked well in the past, is likely to make an executive miss signs of incipient trouble or misinterpret them when they do appear. (source: gmat prep; also in the OG verbal supplement)
(ING noun; not passive)

Hope this helps!
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Re: Correct Usage of Being [#permalink]

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14 Jul 2015, 07:13
sungoal wrote:
Charles Lindbergh, for his attempt at a solo transatlantic flight, was very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he therefore refused to carry even a pound of mail, despite being offered \$1,000 to do so.
A. Charles Lindbergh, for his attempt at a solo transatlantic flight, was very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he therefore
B. When Charles Lindbergh was attempting his solo transatlantic flight, being very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane, he
C. Since he was very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he was attempting his solo transatlantic flight, so Charles Lindbergh
D. Being very reluctant to carry any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight was the reason that Charles Lindbergh
E. Very reluctant to have any extra weight on his plane when he attempted his solo transatlantic flight, Charles Lindbergh

Source: GMATPrep

Experts please explain why option D is wrong. I found D similar to a officially correct sentence below:

Being heavily committed to a course of action, especially one that has worked well in the past, is likely to make an executive miss signs of incipient trouble or misinterpret them when they do appear.
This is a correct answer picked from OG12 SC question. What is the difference in the sentence structure between this sentence and option D mentioned above

The use of "being" in D is very wordy and awkward. In the second sentence, "being" is used as a noun. The noun phrase "being heavily committed to a course of action" is acceptable.
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Re: Correct Usage of Being   [#permalink] 14 Jul 2015, 07:13
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