Billy Connolly once remarked that there were two non-fatal conditions that were, in his opinion, worse than all others: fish odour syndrome and jet-lag.

Fish odour syndrome, unlike jet lag, is permanent: sufferers with this genetic anomaly – techincally called trimethylaminuria – are unable to break down the chemical trimethylamine normally. So trimethylamine oozes through their sweat, urine and breath, and they perpetually smell like rotting fish.

Sounds awful, and it is. I have actually met somebody with this condition. My aunt had a tenant for a couple of years who was one of these unfortunate souls. The poor guy, and all his belongings, smelled so bad that my aunt, about a month after he moved in, decided to inspect his room to make sure he didn’t have a dead body in there. One sniff of his shoes almost made her faint. (Funnily enough, the guy had an ex-wife and children. Go fig.)

I would reckon that trimethylaminuria is much worse than jet-lag.

But jet-lag still really, really sucks. I’m suffering from it right now.

As Connolly described it, in his case on tour in Australia: you’re lying there fast asleep. All of a sudden at four in the morning, no matter how little sleep you’ve had, BANG, you’re awake. Your brain shouts at you,


And there’s nothing you can do. Argh… My head hurts.