Posted by Parthian on May 28, 2007
In Reply to: Re: Extras posted by ESC on May 28, 2007
: : Is there a phrase or short saying describing having all the "extras" or luxuries while losing sight of the essentials or basics? I mean something that gets at the non-functionality of that sort of situation.
: There's "bells and whistles" (see archives -
: http://www.phrases.org.uk/bulletin_board/26/messages/897.html ) but I don't believe that actually means functionality is lost. How about "form over substance." When a person or organization cares more about how something appears than how it actually addresses getting the job done.
:I think there are so many ways of putting that concept,all with various shades,that there is no definitive phrase.I rather like 'frivolous(ly) opulence(t),or the best line/phrase I think to describe a general 'missing the point' is from Shakespear's [Henry iv or v??] "He apprehends a world of figures,but not that to which he should attend",but that sort of misses the luxury part,just thought,and from the same set of plays,"Falstaffian"...the fat buffoon always self-indulgent and useless as a knight,per OED "Wrapped up to a Falstaffian rotundity in flannels and furs."