A graphic description of a drunkard preparing for his next binge with a water shot.
Major Prohaska ordered soda water. Anyone who knew him well could predict that he would get very drunk tonight. He simply used water to clear the way for liquor, the way streets are cleaned before an official visit.
Source: Joseph Roth, The Radetzky March, trans. by Joachim Neugroschel (London: Penguin, 1995), p. 75
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