drop a brick/clanger
drop a brick
1. To unintentionally say or do something embarrassing, tactless, or indiscreet; to commit some social faux pas or mistake. Primarily heard in UK. I dropped a brick on our first date by ordering veal, only realizing later that he's a staunch animal rights advocate.
2. To announce a particularly surprising, alarming, or upsetting piece of news. An alternative form of "drop a bombshell." Primarily heard in US, South Africa. Mary dropped a brick when she told me she was moving to France next week. I'm about to drop a brick on my parents by telling them that I'm going to quit law school and pursue a career in art.
drop a clanger
To accidentally do something embarrassing. Primarily heard in UK, Australia. I really dropped a clanger when I asked Julia about her surprise party—which hadn't happened yet.
drop a brick
Also, drop a clanger. Say something indiscreet, commit a social gaffe. For example, John dropped a brick when he called her by his ex-wife's name. [Slang; 1920s]
drop a brickBRITISH
If you drop a brick, you say something which upsets or offends other people. After his comments on the live TV programme, Mr Freeman was immediately aware that he had dropped a political brick of the worst kind.
drop a clangerBRITISH, INFORMAL
If you drop a clanger, you make a very embarrassing mistake. Conservatives in Eastleigh dropped a clanger in their election leaflet by admitting that few people will be voting for them tomorrow. The presenter dropped a clanger on this morning's show by referring to the singer's long-haired son as a girl. Note: This expression probably comes from comparing an obvious and embarrassing mistake with the clang or loud ringing noise made when a heavy metal object is dropped.
drop a brickmake an indiscreet or embarrassing remark. British informal
drop a clangermake an embarrassing or foolish mistake. British informal
Dropping something that makes a loud clang attracts attention; this mid 20th-century expression is used especially in the context of a very embarrrassing or tactless act or remark made in a social situation.
1998 Spectator Yet he never escaped from his own nagging suspicion that he had somehow overachieved…and that he was likely to drop a huge clanger at any moment.
drop a ˈbrick/ˈclanger(British English, informal) say or do something that offends or embarrasses somebody, although you did not intend to: I dropped a real clanger when I mentioned the party. He hadn’t been invited.
drop a brickand drop a bomb(shell)
tv. to reveal startling information. Britney came in and dropped a brick that scared us all. She dropped a bombshell when she told us she was married again.
drop a brickInformal
To make a clumsy social error.