Got up early to meet the estimable Keith Michael and a few other intrepid explorers. Traveled by subway and bus out to Dead Horse Bay, to go birding, see what we could see. Cold, wet, misty, occasionally rainy. The beach was scattered with beautiful debris — seeing what the water churns up is one of the reasons to go out to this place. The birds didn’t really cooperate, though. Mergansers, buffleheads, Brant geese, mallards, Gadwalls, a loon, endless gulls, American black ducks, sure. But what one really goes to see is the massive flock of scaup, somewhere between five and ten thousand of them. They were there, but on the far side of the bay, visible only through binoculars. We couldn’t get to them and they wouldn’t come to us. Every now and then a few hundred would suddenly rise into the air, and I kept hoping maybe one of them had suggested the fishing was better on our side and they’d all head on over, but no. Still, it was lots of fun, and to reward ourselves we went to the Pharmacy in Brooklyn afterwards and had coffee, hot chocolate, grilled cheese, and pie. Then in the evening I went to see Kenny Endo and Kaoru Watanabe on the taiko drums and Japanese flutes. These guys are always amazing individually, and together they are guaranteed, absolutely guaranteed, to knock your socks off. They’re doing the same program in DC on Wednesday — if you’re down there, go go go!