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Posted by Lewis on May 31, 2007

In Reply to: Extras posted by pamela on May 31, 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 -
: : : : : // 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."

: : : Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic?

: : :I thought that just meant that something was utterly futile,ESC,or has the luxurious nature of the Titanic crept into the phrase in some way?

: "It's all pastry; there's no meat in that pie" is a quote that I have heard once a week for the past 3 years in a training video. Pamela

what about "can't see the wood for the trees" or the Biblical "can't see the speck in another through a plank in his own eye" to describe being unable to see the essence of a situation through defective appreciation?

personally, I rather like 'bells and whistles' to describe inessential peripheral features.

is the original question being "lost in a miasma of irrelevency" ?