Which of the following sentences are correct?

  1. You can't be nice and be a rock star at the same time.

  2. You can't be nice and a rock star at the same time.

  3. You can't be a rock star and be nice at the same time.

  4. You can't be a rock star and nice at the same time.

1 and 3 sound better to me. 4 looks like wrong to me. And I am not sure about 2. What do you think?

closed as off-topic by J.R. May 17 '18 at 15:45

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  • 3
    The reason #2 and #4 are both (equivalently) "awkward" is because they effectively zeugmas. If you are nice, that's an adjectival reference, but if you're a rock star you're equating one noun (you) with another noun (cf I have three dollars and influenza, I am FumbleFingers and in a hurry...). – FumbleFingers May 14 '18 at 16:55
  • @FumbleFingers Why not make this an answer? – Chemomechanics May 14 '18 at 20:08
  • @Chemomechanics: Like I said, I was in a hurry! :) At the time I was pretty certain there would be at least one earlier ELU question on this issue. But if I can't find one today and no-one else posts an answer here, I'll follow up on your suggestion. – FumbleFingers May 15 '18 at 12:02