Coates, imagine yourself buried up to your neck in sand in the desert. Fire ants are crawling all over your face. The sun is beating down. Once every five minutes, a midget runs up and kicks you in the ear. It is a constant struggle to survive the pain, the humiliation. The vultures hover. All seems lost.
Yet, somehow, you endure. You endure. Life is a value. The way out is through. A stitch in time saves nine. The human spirit is undefeatable. You are determined. The day is almost over. Night is coming. If only you can last until morning, you think, you will find a way to escape. But, whatever, you must hang on. You must not give in to the constant searing pain. And you know you can hang on. You have managed so far. Despite it all. Despite everything your nemesis could subject you to.
Then he returns, to check up on you; he himself, the man who put you in this position. "Eh?" your foe says wonderingly. "Still alive? Resilient chap, are ye? The ants, the midgets haven't done ya in yet? Huh."
You smile a little smile of incipient triumph. This enemy, you know, wishes to defeat you not by killing you outright but by persuading you to forsake your life yourself. He wants you to give up and die because you choose to die. If you can survive his taunts, you know, then you can survive until the next morning...and then you can escape, and win.
"So. Tough guy, eh?" he says. "Well well well." He rummages around in a briefcase he happens to have brought with him.
"Hey look, just to help pass the time...how about a little reading before I leave you for the night? Ah let's see...here's something. A little tome I've been perusing by a guy named James Valliant, The Passion of Ayn Rand's Critics.... So. To begin. 'It is a truth not universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a poor philosophy must be in want of an objective premise...' "
Your brain congeals in terror. Oh God no. No. No. No. Anything but that. Please God no, not that prissy fussbudget and those roiling, turgid excrescences he calls a case...no...no...no...not that, anything but that!!!
You're dead in an hour.