this is exactly what happens when i don't have a 39¢ stamp and have to assemble one out of smaller stamps. it was payment for the gutter work last week, i hope those guys don't think i'm crazy when they receive my check.

danio swimming by java fern

the filter on the aquarium was making some sounds today (normally it's silent) so i was playing around with it, trying to make it go quiet again. in the process i churned the filter cage and the tank became cloudy again. that's when i added a few drops of the tank clearing solution, supposedly safe for fish. when i came back to check the aquarium, i saw a pair of danios floating near the surface of the water. i looked again and realized they weren't dead, but just hanging out, like they were grazing from the surface. as a matter of fact, all the fish seemed a bit listless, and i wonder if it had anything to do with the clearing solution. not that i mind, for once the aquarium was peaceful and nobody was chasing anybody else around. then i noticed something. 1. 2. 3. 4. 4 danios. where's the 5th one? i could've sworn there were 5. i looked everywhere for a body, even outside the tank, in the possibility that one of them jumped out, but i couldn't find it. did the other fish eat it? did i miscount?

in the evening i went down to fenway 13 to meet sara and joel for a free screening of perfume: the story of a murderer. i actually got there early and spent some time browsing the art store next door before heading to the theatre. i'd seen the perfume trailer, which starts off like one of those pretty foreign period romance dramas, but then transforms into a horror murder mystery by the second half. after seeing the movie i'm a bit at lost for words to describe how i feel but it's definitely a great movie, one of the most engrossing piece of cinema i've seen in a long time. perfume in a nutshell is the story of a man who has an uncanny sense of smell who sets out in life to create the most perfect fragrance. the movie plays out like a fairy tale, a boy with a special ability, who overcomes seemingly debilitating hardships to triumph above the odds. did i fail to mention that maybe he's a psychopath and once old enough starts murdering girls to capture their scents? but the story is so compelling that you end up rooting for this antihero. the movie defies expectations, based on a german novel, filmed by a german director, takes place in italy and france, everyone speaks english, and features american actor dustin hoffman in a supporting role as an out-of-luck perfume creator. the film is long but you hardly notice, and by the time you get to the end, the finale itself is worth the price of admission. i can't divulge any details for fear of spoiling it, but it's thoroughly satisfying (in a WTF kind of way) and a sensory assault of the eyes. i wholeheartedly recommend perfume, one of the better movies i've seen this year.

after the movie, joel gave me his hard drive enclosure and i got a ride from sara to the T. kenmore station is being renovated so all the new gates don't work yet which means free admission to the trains. when i got back to cambridge i tried getting a burrito at boca grande but they were closed (served me right for being so loyal to them). instead, i got a steak and cheese sandwich from the nearby mass ave pizza joint and wolfed it down as soon as i got home.