a cold shower

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a cold shower

1. An unexpectedly cold reaction from someone or something. Well, that bad review in the paper was certainly a cold shower amid the excitement of starring in my first play.
2. A distraction that allows one to suppress sexual urges or feelings. Often used in the phrase "take a cold shower." You're losing your mind over this girl. Go take a cold shower before you do something stupid. That movie was steamy! I think I need to go home and take a cold shower.
See also: cold, shower

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]
See also: cold, shower
References in classic literature ?
I am writing in it now in the late afternoon loveliness, much interrupted by the mosquitoes and the temptation to look at all the glories of the new green leaves washed half an hour ago in a cold shower. Two owls are perched near me, and are carrying on a long conversation that I enjoy as much as any warbling of nightingales.
Jo gave a sort of gasp, as if a cold shower bath had suddenly fallen upon her, for such an unexpected turning of the tables actually took her breath away.
I don't see the sense of crowing over him as a superb national production, because he is big and strong, and drinks beer with impunity, and takes a cold shower bath all the year round.
He advised, however, that this is not something that should be done instantly, and that the body should be eased into the experience by first taking cold showers, then moving up to icepacks on the neck, and so on. 
To be honest, I love cold showers in the morning but with Bukidnon's nippy conditions, I don't mind taking hot showers once in a while.
Cold showers have been the secret weapon for everyone from the ancient Spartans, who thought it made them tougher, to James Bond, who claimed they made him more alert.
The 67-year-old Cheers star, who was made President on the launch night, spots Ben relaxing in the garden on a sunlounger, and approaches him to ask how many cold showers he's taken.
Cold showers help in many ways to rehydrate during the month of Ramadan.
The idea that self-imposed periods of daily misery - like freezing cold showers, extreme diets and punishing exercise regimes - will steel you for challenges of a hectic work life isn't whimsy.
It wasn't just the monkeys who had once received those cold showers who beat him up; the other newbie joined in, even though he didn't know why.
Brechin endured further misery after the match when they were forced to use cold showers and were sent packing by Dumbarton without so much as a cucumber sandwich.
She also admitted four further charges of abuse over a 15-month period between April 2014 and July 2015 at addresses in the Highlands, including kicking the child, hitting him with a wooden spoon, biting him and subjecting him to cold showers while kicking him.
He said Fee told him she had a type of drill which was used to castrate young boys, made him eat his own sick, and forced him to take cold showers if he wet the bed -after banning him from going to the toilet for long periods of time.
The boy said he was banned from going to the toilet in the night but given cold showers "for 15 or 20 minutes" if he wet the bed and once spent the whole day in a cold shower, drip drying in between.