What does the expression "clever clogs" mean ? Is " réponses intelligentes " ?
Dear Mr Wilptz,
I am pleased to tell you how you could right up unclog your brain-box. Take a clever something. That's skilful, talented, intelligent (as you cleverly told it). Then take a clog. Not a wooden shoe, but something that works as an impediment. Get both things tethered together and you get a clever clogs (clogs in the plural), i.e. someone who purports to be very intelligent, knowing everything.
You were right at posting this issue in the idiomatic column as clever clogs works as an idiom. Where does it come from? I presume it is an antithesis. Is the clog jamming cleverness? Maybe. British say 'clever dick' as well. Synonym: a know-it-all.
Are there clever clogs in the Delavigne staff? I don't think so. Of course, Philip Cheeter is ostentiously smart and self-confident as women are at stake. But his skills set doesn't go beyond dating women. Clever clogs is an idiomatic expression that applies to people who show intelligence and like to show it off. If you want to see a real clever clogs, just look at me.
Your devoted unclogging plumber Joe
"clever clog" is mostly used in a negative meaning. It denotes a person who has a lot knowlegde or skills, or at least pretends to have it, and who sports it at every occasion. A "clever clog" tends to tell other people what to do and what do think and thinks he knows everything better. When this meddlesome behaviour is a nuisance to other people, that person is called a "clever clog".
An American colloquial synomon for it is "smart ass".