The New Zealand Railways Magazine, Volume 9, Issue 12 (March 1, 1935)
The Man in Front
The Man in Front.
When railway trains first took to rails the Law demanded that a man walk ahead waving a red flag so that nobody should walk into the train. At first this was the sort of job many of us are looking for to-day, but as trains began to add a spot of alacrity, Johnnie Walker had to pull up his socks to keep the hardware off his suspenders. Hence the slogan “Johnnie Walker, still going strong.” But, finally, engines became so fast that anybody who could keep ahead of them found that they were able to earn better money catching hares by hand for the Smithfield markets. So the practice died out, and people gradually recognised a certain element of risk in holding picnics on the railway track.
All of which is as incredible as it sounds, and strictly within the bounds of improbability; but, after all, truth is stranger to fiction, and the best lies are merely Truth in a state of elation.