go all round the houses


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go (all) around the houses

To waste one's time and energy saying unimportant things before getting to one's point. Doc, please stop going around the houses and just tell me—how serious are Johnny's injuries?
See also: around, house

go all round the ˈhouses

(British English, informal) do something or ask a question in a very complicated way instead of in a simple, direct way: If you want to ask her something, just ask her directly — there’s no need to go all round the houses!
See also: all, house, round