For months now I have been in an almost constant state of agitation about the current political campaign. My distaste for Clinton and fear of Trump color my days and nights. Now, happily, a soothing calm has settled on me, making even the daily chores of shopping at the market and preparing dinner once again joyful. [Tonight? Seared tuna with a dipping sauce of garlic, ginger, and soy sauce, haricot verts, and my signature dish of cherry tomato halves sautéed with garlic and chopped fresh basil.]
The cause of this calm? The thought that very soon I shall again be teaching Kant’s First Critique. It is for me what it must be for a pianist or harpsichordist who returns to playing Bach’s Art of the Fugue. I find myself throughout the day delivering the first lecture in my head, planning the sequence in which I shall explain the countless things students must know in order to begin to appreciate that transcendently [and also, as it happens, transcendentally] great work.
Oh, I shall volunteer for the Clinton campaign in North Carolina and do my little bit to carry the state for her, perhaps also helping to rid us of our egregious senior senator and appalling governor. But as I enter data or walk door to door, in my head I shall be revisiting the Deduction of the Pure Concepts of Understanding or the Second Analogy.