Dreamt last night I was an international executive for hire - a masterless ronin - brought in on a high level project by a ruthless business mogul (as played by Donald Sutherland).
I'd worked for him before, or knew him somehow - so when I looked up during my tour of the grounds to find a pair of crazy-steely eyes peering down at me from where he stood on the veranda above - I paused but met his gaze.
"What is it you want me to do?" I asked.
"I want you to... CATCH THIS!" he roared, and started hurling tennis balls at different, impossible-to-intercept angles, 40 to 60 feet from where I stood.
I ran and dove towards the first, nearly catching it, but then came further and further away from each subsequent throw until finally, when the third or forth ball caromed off a swing set I dropped to my knees.
And started to laugh.
Giggles became titters, then quickly evolved into deep, rolling belly laughs, amassing like clouds in a storm.
I laughed and I laughed - not from a sense of futility, but from a sense of joy - deep joy - until tears came to my eyes.
There was no way I could do what he asked and we both knew it.
I looked up again and met his gaze - that of a predator, falcon-like and probing for weakness - and saw we were done.
He wasn't happy about it.
I'd beaten him, after all - with joy and laughter… and by refusing to play his game.