SAT Reading - Khan Diagnostic Quiz level 3 - reading 2

Questions 1-11 are based on the following
passage.


The following passage is adapted from Patrick Waddington, The Street That Got Mislaid, ©Patrick Waddington, 1954.




Marc Girondin had worked in the filing section of the city

hall's engineering department for so long that the city was

laid out in his mind like a map, full of names and places,
intersecting streets and streets that led nowhere, blind alleys
5 and winding lanes.
In all Montreal no one possessed such knowledge; a dozen

policemen and taxi drivers together could not rival him. That

is not to say that he actually knew the streets whose names he

could recite like a series of incantations, for he did little
10 walking. He knew simply of their existence, where they

were, and in what relation they stood to others.
But it was enough to make him a specialist. He was

undisputed expert of the filing cabinets where all the

particulars of all the streets from Abbott to Zotique were
15 indexed, back, forward and across. Those aristocrats, the

engineers, the inspectors of water mains and the like, all

came to him when they wanted some little particular, some

detail, in a hurry. They might despise him as a lowly clerk,

but they needed him all the same.
20 Marc much preferred his office, despite the profound lack

of excitement of his work, to his room on Oven Street

(running north and south from Sherbrooke East to St.

Catherine), where his neighbors were noisy and sometimes

violent, and his landlady consistently so. He tried to explain
25 the meaning of his existence once to a fellow tenant, Louis,

but without much success. Louis, when he got the drift, was

apt to sneer.
"So Craig latches on to Bleury and Bleury gets to be Park,

so who cares? Why the excitement?"
30 "I will show you," said Marc. "Tell me, first, where you

live."
"Are you crazy? Here on Oven Street. Where else?"
"How do you know?"
"How do I know? I'm here, ain't I? I pay my rent, don't I? I
35 get my mail here, don't I?"
Marc shook his head patiently.
"None of that is evidence," he said."You live here on

Oven Street because it says so in my filing cabinet at city

hall. The post office sends you mail because my card index
40 tells it to. If my cards didn't say so, you wouldn't exist and

Oven Street wouldn't either. That, my friend, is the triumph

of bureaucracy."
Louis walked away in disgust. "Try telling that to the

landlady," he muttered.
45 So Marc continued on his undistinguished career, his

fortieth birthday came and went without remark, day after

day passed uneventfully. A street was renamed, another

constructed, a third widened; it all went carefully into the

files, back, forward and across.
50 And then something happened that filled him with

amazement, shocked him beyond measure, and made the

world of the filing cabinets tremble to their steel bases.
One August afternoon, opening a drawer to its fullest

extent, he felt something catch. Exploring farther, he
55 discovered a card stuck at the back between the top and

bottom. He drew it out and found it to be an old index card,

dirty and torn, but still perfectly decipherable. It was labeled

RUE DE LA BOUTEILLE VERTE, or GREEN BOTTLE

STREET.
60 Marc stared at it in wonder. He had never heard of the

place or of anything resembling so odd a name. Undoubtedly

it had been retitled in some other fashion befitting the

modern tendency. He checked the listed details and ruffled

confidently through the master file of street names. It was not
65 there. He made another search, careful and protracted,

through the cabinets. There was nothing. Absolutely nothing.
Once more he examined the card. There was no mistake.

The date of the last regular street inspection was exactly

fifteen years, five months and fourteen days ago.
70 As the awful truth burst upon him, Marc dropped the card

in horror, then pounced on it again fearfully, glancing over

his shoulder as he did so.
It was a lost, a forgotten street. For fifteen years and more

it had existed in the heart of Montreal, not half a mile from
75 city hall, and no one had known. It had simply dropped out

of sight, a stone in water.

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
  • 6
  • 7
  • 8
  • 9
  • 10
  • 11
  • 12
Question 1 Over the course of the passage, the main focus shifts from