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Very similar to
I think this is too similar to the 'Science is a jigsaw puzzle, not a house of cards' Maybe someone else could find the 'mountain of pebbles' analogy useful, but I found it to be very redundant to the jigsaw puzzle bite. Even more, I think the jigsaw bite represents an even clearer picture.
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It's true that many metaphors are similar to others, and seem redundant.

But we're reluctant to toss them, because but may a) resonate with different audiences (e.g. mountaineers!) or different speakers, b) be useful as replacements when over-used metaphors become cliches that no long conjure up an image, or c) be useful simply for variety when you, as a speaker, get bored.

Question we're pondering: Is it better to combine similar metaphors into one listing (e.g. put this one into "jigsaw...house of cards" as an alternative? Or keep them separate so they are easier to spot?

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