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water off a duck’s back

If you say that something (usually a criticism, a telling-off or an insult) is water off a duck’s back or like water off a duck’s back to someone, you mean that it has no effect on them.

Why does it mean this?

Ducks have specially oily feathers to stop them absorbing water when they are swimming. Water doesn’t make them wet – it flows straight off them.


I must have told her a hundred times that she mustn’t do that, but it’s water off a duck’s back! She just goes on doing it.

How do you say it in Russian?

Как с гуся вода




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