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The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 6, Issue 2 (June 1, 1931)

Live Wires and Dead Marines

Live Wires and Dead Marines.

Human existence is not necessarily a straight line, although there are some who look upon it as a means of connecting two or more given pints; others assert that life is either straight or straitened, and that a rolling pin gathers no dough. Ethically speaking, the straight and narrow path is a “moral,” but adumbrating actual-airily it is a long lane that has no learning. A straight life-line needs no life-belt, but neither does a dead marine need a muzzle, for his shouting days are over.

A life that is more unctuous than anxious may flow with the mellifluency of an oiled octave on the zither, an icecream cone in the frigid zone, or a slippery customer in Greece; but the caretaker who gets no kicks from life gets no kick out of it. On the one hand the boot is on the other foot, and the life-line that loops the loop loopily, like the temperature chart of an Eskimo with a hoodoo on the igloo, or a cross-eyed cat in a shunting-yard, provides more variety to the running foot than macaroni.

Life is a lesson in knowing what not to know and experience is the only antidote for fake-bite. If life is not an adventure it's a sad venture, and drear at the price. After all life is after all; it is not what you make it, but what it makes you. You are either libelled or labelled, and the hand that socks the label is the hand that fools the world.