- catch a cold
- 1. Britishto contract gonorrhoeaArmy use, punning on the meaning, to get yourself into trouble. Shakespeare may have had the same thing in mind when he wrote:A maid, and stuff d. There's goodly catching of cold. (Much Ado About Nothing)2. to have a trouser zip undoneAn oblique warning from one male to another, received by me on the quay at Destin, Florida, on a mild day in November 1987.3. to suffer a lossNormally as a speculator or gambler:The 1960s speculative bubble burst and while the rest of the world caught a cold, Japan got pneumonia. (Daily Telegraph, 5 December 1994)
How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms. R. W. Holder. 2014.