Archive for August 1, 2010

idiom: to not bat an eye

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I have another idiom for you this week. The expression is “to not bat an eye”. It is used when we want to talk about someone who is not shocked or surprised when most people would be shocked or surprised by a certain situation.

If someone bats their eyes, it basically means that they blink.  Usually if we receive some shocking news, it’s natural for us to blink our eyes when we hear the news. Therefore, if a person doesn’t blink or “bat an eye”, they are not shocked or surprised at all about something. For example:

When the salesman told Walter that the price would be $150,000, he didn’t  bat an eye. He just agreed to pay the money without hesitation. He must be really rich.

I told my girlfriend I wanted to go to Europe for six months alone, and she didn’t even bat an eye. I think maybe she doesn’t love me anymore.

My co-workers are really strange. The boss announced that everyone would have to take a 10% paycut and none of them batted an eye. I seem to be the only one who’s upset about that.

So, as you can see, this idiom is usually used when someone doesn’t react in a shocked or upset way to something another person tells them. Also, for emphasis, we can put the word “even” before “bat an eye”, as in the second example.

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