He was in the Gulf when the Iraq/Iran war was on and working on a contract for Iran. He was in a particular part of the ship one day and realised he had left his cigarettes in his cabin so he went to get them. A Missile hit the ship where he'd just been and 5 men were killed. Two crew and three Iranians. So smoking saved his life.
Another story was during the Teddy Boy era in the 50s. Their ship docked in Canada and all the crew lads put their 'Drapes' on to go ashore. The Canadian's hadnt seen that Edwardian style fashion and had a good laugh at a bunch of 'Teds' coming down the gang plank.