Students of Hebrew will be delighted to know that the rabbis felt their pain in advance. Hebrew is an ambiguous language. And ambiguous phrases in the Hebrew text are an occasion for playful midrash (with a serious message).
Take Ruth 1:1
וַיְהִי בִּימֵי שְׁפֹט הַשֹּׁפְטִים וַיְהִי רָעָב בָּאָרֶץ וַיֵּלֶךְ אִישׁ מִבֵּית לֶחֶם יְהוּדָה לָגוּר בִּשְׂדֵי מוֹאָב הוּא וְאִשְׁתּוֹ וּשְׁנֵי בָנָיו׃
That first phrase (va-yehee beemay shefoat ha-shoa-feteem) in the plain sense (using context and common sense as a guide) means, “It happened in the days of the judging of the Judges” (back when there were Judges ruling Israel). But the phrase could also be taken to mean: back when Judges were judged [by others]. In other words, it could refer to a time when people used to hold judgment on the Judges instead of obeying the judgments of the Judges! The rabbis make a midrash on this with a serious moral:
So in the days when the judges judged, when a man had been guilty of idolatry and the judge wished to pass judgment on him, he came and flogged the judge, saying, “I have done to him what he wanted to do to me.” Woe unto the generation whose judges are judged! That is the meaning of the verse AND IT CAME TO PASS IN THE DAYS OF JUDGING OF THE JUDGES.
-Ruth Rabbah, Soncino Edition, Proem.