Having spent forty years as a teacher, September always seem like a beginning. In that way, teaching has a sort of eternal optimism built into it. What didn’t work last year can be put right this year. In my present life as a bookseller I see that pattern persists, not only in my own mentality but in that of the students and teachers who come to the bookstore. They’re eager, enthusiastic. Though teaching methods and course content changes human nature doesn’t. Acquiring and conveying knowledge, the pursuit of education, has a purity to it. That’s affirming.