It must have been about 5am. I was woken by an almighty racket. My son had hit me in the face with a ridiculously oversized tennis racket - the little terror! I scolded him and told him to get back to sleep.

Half an hour later, I was woken again; this time by repeated clanking coming from outside my front door. I hurried outside to investigate only to see a portly, middle-aged fellow with greying hair in a grotesque puffer jacket. He was holding an old cod and walloping it repeatedly against the metallic balcony barrier.

"Excuse me. Do you mind not doing that? Firstly, it's 5.30am and secondly, I'm fairly sure it's cancerous."

The oddly jacketed fool just laughed. "It's 5.30pm and walloping cod does not cause cancer. That's a load of old codswallop."

Three days later, I was diagnosed with cancer.

By Mansour Chow (first of five)