cold shower

Idioms & Phrases

cold shower

A surprisingly chilly reception, reaction, or response, as in The small voter turnout was a cold shower to the League of Women Voters. The allusion in this term is to the unexpected and not always pleasant effect of an ice-cold shower. [Second half of 1900s]

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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