dead duck

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dead duck

1. A person or thing that is useless or hopeless. That new budget bill was a dead duck before it hit the Senate. That mechanic turned out to be a dead duck. He didn't even know how to change my oil.
2. Someone who is about to be in a great deal of trouble for something they have done. When Mom finds out you snuck out of the house to meet your boyfriend, you're going to be a dead duck!
See also: dead, duck

dead duck

Fig. someone or something that is certain to die or fail. If I fail that test, I'm a dead duck. When the outlaw drew his pistol, the sheriff knew he was a dead duck.
See also: dead, duck

dead duck

1. A person doomed to failure or death; a hopeless case. For example, If they can't find a heart to transplant soon, he's a dead duck. [1940s]
2. A useless, worthless, or outmoded person or thing. For example, They didn't interview the outgoing senator; to the press he's a dead duck. Some speculate that this slangy term comes from an old saying, "Never waste powder on a dead duck," first recorded in 1829.
See also: dead, duck

a dead duck

1. If someone or something is a dead duck, they are a failure. The government is a dead duck; and the Supreme National Council does not have the means to govern. The movie's probably a dead duck.
2. Someone who is a dead duck is going to be punished severely. Hit me on the head again, and you're a dead duck.
See also: dead, duck

a dead ˈduck

(informal) a plan, an idea, etc. that has failed or is certain to fail and that is therefore not worth discussing: The new supermarket is going to be a dead duck; there’s no demand for one in this area.
See also: dead, duck

dead duck

n. a person or thing doomed to failure or disaster. This whole plan was a dead duck from the beginning.
See also: dead, duck
References in periodicals archive ?
However, if he's asleep when somebody blows a duck call, he torpedoes out through the thatched marsh grasses of the front of the blind and enthusiastically retrieves a decoy or chain of decoys or anything else he encounters that is not a dead duck.
Weibo user If So said the dead ducks in Pengshan river presents a very practical problem, and shows how the society's bottom line is getting lower and lower.
As part of the UK Government's AI surveillance strategy, RSPB staff will be looking for sick or dead ducks, geese and swans this winter.
A villager, who asked not to be named, said: "A lady I know came to my door, very upset, saying she'd found some dead ducks.
1, officials at Tule Lake National Wildlife Refuge had already scooped up 10,000 dead ducks and geese, all victims of avian botulism.
A thousand dead ducks were found floating in the Nanhe river, which runs through the southern Chinese province of Sichuan, on Tuesday.
Police at the time of the discovery described hundreds of animal carcasses on the property, and said there was a large pit where some of the dead ducks and chickens were thrown.
Meanwhile, bird flu hit a ninth European Union country yesterday, with the discovery of two dead ducks in Sweden.
Two dead ducks being tested in France were just 150 miles from England.
They turned gap doubles into outs and reduced daring baserunners to dead ducks, and on Wednesday outfielders Raul Mondesi of the Dodgers and Jim Edmonds of the Angels were rewarded for their fielding excellence by being named winners of 1997 Rawlings Gold Gloves.
And how sometimes we hit the ducks, sometimes they hit us: An expired snow slammed into the blind and scared me witless, and I recalled a pal's story of dead ducks hitting two hunters in a single blind.
THE Queen has received some strange gifts in her time - so it should have come as no surprise when she was handed two dead ducks on a silver tray.
You need a freezer in which to keep your dead ducks between training sessions.
DERBY and Fulham look like dead ducks, but the battle is on to avoid the drop for one team out of five.
If we had stayed at Richmond we were dead ducks in the professional era," he said.