He went into a tavern on a dark, damp night when halfway wanted to go home and sleep, but his soul felt darker than the night and he wanted the two of them to be equal. He though a few beers and some food would help the balance.
As his eyes adjusted to the darkness, he saw people scattered throughout the tavern. He took a seat at the bar.
As he drank a beer and ate a sandwich, he looked at the liquor bottles behind it, then at his reflection in the mirror behind them.
In the mirror, he noticed that a man who was sitting at the bar was holding a shot glass and toasting his own reflection. The hand that held the shot glass was trembling as the man lowered it to the bar. Then he leaned his head back and whipped it forward, quickly but awkwardly.
He saw the man's flushed face and red eyes.
That man has just walked in the door of the House of Intoxication, he thought. He'll stay there for a while, stumble around and hit the walls, then fall asleep with his hangover around him like a sleeping bag. He was trying to stop his awareness if only for a short time.
He wondrered if if should help the man, but decided he wouldn't because the man wouldn't want it. The best way he could help was not to end up like him.
He drank his beer, ate his sandwich, paid his bill and left the bar -- for bed, for sleep, for waking and for action, so he could live another day and drink another might at a nother tavern.