Hi everybody!

This is a very stupid sentence, like those which make us take things for granted. The first time I read this multiple choice exercise, I made my choice, then I looked at the key and changed my mind, and on second thoughts, I kept my original decision:

It's very _________ in here. I can't hear anything.

a) noisy b) quiet c) exciting d) clean

Now, my doubt lay between a) and b). At first, my obvious choice was a), and big was my surprise when I read the key showing b) as the correct one. Then I thought: "Right, you can't hear anything because there's complete silence, so it must be very quiet in there". Finally, I changed my mind and decided on a) again, for if it were b), shouldn't the sentence read: "It's very quiet in here. I don't hear anything". The modal "can" has to do with ability and possibility, which in this case are impeded by the loud noise. I think "can't here anything" is the clue here. What's your opinion?

Thanks a lot!!

This test question suffers from reality deprivation, and thereby plays upon our expectations. I answered noisy at first too, because it is noisy places (where we can't hear anything else), rather than completely silent places, that we usually stumble into in real life. Can't and don't do not affect the meaning-- it is quiet in any case, not noisy.
Hi Mister Micawber!

Thanks a lot for your reply!! Now, if the sentence continued: "I can't hear anything you're saying", would only in such cases the word "noisy" do?

Thanks again!

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This is a very stupid sentence
Good point! I think it has two answers, both correct.
Sorry to sidestep Jim's pronouncement, but if the original sentence continued, I can't hear anything you're saying --I don't know about 'only' and 'in such cases'-- but here at least, noisy would have to be the answer.

(PS: It's me, unlogged in-- MM)
Mister MicawberThis test question suffers from reality deprivation, and thereby plays upon our expectations.
Wonderful, Mike!!!!
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I think that in the original sentence, "I can't hear anything" means that there's nothing to be heard. If it's "I can't hear anything you're saying", well the other person obviously says something, but his/her words cannot be heard, most probably because of the noise.