Knights coach Nathan Brown and fan Geoff Campbell with his revamped scooter

Every Newcastle Knights fan knows Geoff Campbell.

He’s the bloke who paints his face and wears a Knights beanie with blue and red dreadlocks.

Geoff, 57, gets around on a mobility scooter, having injured discs in his back and neck at work 15 years ago.

He recently went to buy a Wests flag to go with the Knights flag he waves at home games.

Wests staff recognised him as the bloke who paints his face.

Geoff Campbell in full war paint.

Geoff Campbell in full war paint.

So the Knights and Wests decided they’d do something special for him.

Basically, they pimped his ride.

They refitted his scooter into the “ultimate Knights mobile”, which coach Nathan Brown delivered to Geoff in person at his New Lambton home. 

“I thought, ‘oh my god, is that Nathan Brown’. I just went to pieces. I didn’t believe it,” Geoff said.

“Honestly, it meant so much. I’ve been going through a rough trot.”

This raw emotion came from much hardship. 

His injury happened after he twisted while lifting a 25-kilogram bag of flour, while working as a chef in 2002.

“Every day I’m in pain. I deal with it. But it’s been so long, I can’t remember how I was before this,” he said.

“You’ve still got to stay positive and push yourself.”

Looking in the Herald files at the many photos of an animated Geoff at Knights games, you wouldn’t imagine his daily struggle.

His passion for the Knights runs deep into his soul.

He bleeds red and blue.

Old Timers

Edgeworth’s Gary Lawless has been thinking recently about ageing.

This bout of reflection followed a recent Jeff Corbett column, in which he mentioned that his wife claims he makes “old man noises”.

“According to my wife of 45 years, I too make old man noises when arising from bed or my favourite recliner, or even when I’m putting on my socks,” Gary said.

“I disputed this of course, but having been made aware of these proclivities – and while not making any incriminating admissions – I am now aware that I might utter the odd grunt or groan.

“Like Mr Corbett, I too have to admit to now feeling a little old and lament the loss of a bit of flexibility in my ageing body. My knees are shot, my back is shot and I have also lost most of my hair. Although I must admit that I became follicly-challenged in my late 40s in preparation, I guess, for my current life stage.”

This got Gary thinking: how do you know you’re getting old, when in your own mind you’re still the same person you were 20 years ago?

“I suppose that, apart from the symptoms mentioned above, there are a few indicators that should give a glimpse of the future.”

These may include the following examples of “you know you’re getting old when”: It takes two tries to get up from the couch; everything hurts and what doesn't hurt doesn't work; your idea of a night out is sitting on the patio; your idea of weightlifting is standing up.

“Maybe your readers can suggest more symptoms that all of us in our sunset years need to keep an eye out for?”

Send your examples to topics@theherald.com.au. 

Young At Heart

Speaking of old timers, we ran a story in the news section recently on Fletcher’s Ron MacLeod.

Ron, 88, is a bit of a gym junkie these days.

He hit the weights and exercise bike after a mini-stroke and hasn’t looked back.

We had a good chat to Ron about his life and times. Before hanging up, we thanked him for the interview.

“That’s cool man. See what I mean, I’m still young,” he said.

On The Limit

The human race has peaked, according to a new report published in Frontiers in Physiology.

Apparently we've hit our limit for height, lifespan and physical performance. Soon, we could start going backwards.

Just in time for the robots, hey.