As the nation waited for Winston Peters to decide on a government, there was one brave man who had absolute certainty which way the NZ First leader was going to go.

Step forward Jordan Williams of the self-styled NZ Taxpayers' Union, who tweeted a fortnight ago: "I'm calling it - Winston will go with the status quo. If I'm wrong I'll walk to work in my undies."

The specials were barely counted and it would be two weeks before Peters rejected the status quo.

And, at some stage in that period, Williams' absolute certainty appears to have faded - the tweet was deleted from his Twitter account.

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But the internet remembers - and cached copies of the tweet have been circulating along with prompts for Williams to make good on his bold pledge.

It is unknown whether Jordan Williams wears boxers or Y-fronts. Photo / Supplied
It is unknown whether Jordan Williams wears boxers or Y-fronts. Photo / Supplied

In response to questions from the Herald, Williams said he had carried out his walk to work in underwear.

But it turns out he did so after leaving the country.

Even as Peters decided on a coalition partner, Williams hopped on a plane to the United States to take up a fellowship at a right-wing think tank in Washington DC.

He said the walk had taken place on Tuesday, telling the Herald: "My walk going unnoticed by you isn't my problem. It was some fun involving friends, and now done and dusted."

Green MP Keith Locke walks naked, wearing body paint, down Broadway in Newmarket in 2005.
Green MP Keith Locke walks naked, wearing body paint, down Broadway in Newmarket in 2005.

Doing the walk offshore isn't quite in the spirit of such promises, says Green MP Keith Locke, who made a similar promise in the 2005 election.

During a public debate, he said he would walk Newmarket's Broadway naked if he lost the contest for Epsom to Act's Rodney Hide.

In the end, Locke walked Newmarket's main shopping area naked but for a skimpy g-string, shoes, socks and some clever use of body paint.

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"I notified media when I was doing the walk. It appears he hasn't done so."

Indeed, Locke said the original pledge by Williams would have been understood as a walk from his usual home to his usual workplace.

It is unknown whether Jordan Williams wears boxers or Y-fronts. Photo / Supplied
It is unknown whether Jordan Williams wears boxers or Y-fronts. Photo / Supplied

"I felt I promised to do something and I did it," Locke recalled. "I didn't hide it from the media or do it at a time they weren't around."

Public relations expert David Cormack, of Draper Cormack Group, said such bold promises carried high reward and risk.

"If you're proven to be correct, you've proven yourself to be an astute political observer."

It suggests a keen prescience and strong insider information, he said.

"But if you're wrong, you look silly and you've given a commitment to do something that makes you look even sillier."

Political scientist Bryce Edwards said Williams' certainty wasn't out of keeping among those close to the right wing of politics who believed "they had it in the bag".

"I thought [Winston] was going to go with Labour but I didn't have much to go on. You can make these forecasts but you have to have a high level of confidence in them to say you're going to walk to work in your underpants.

"I don't think Winston Peters could have had that level of confidence at the time."

Hide, who recalled the Locke incident with a laugh, had some advice for Williams.

"Learn from Keith Locke. Own your words and get it over with. Just do it."