Rome Neal walked up to the microphone last week at the Paris Blues in Harlem and was just about to sing “I Worry About You” when he decided to share some great news with his audience. In his 12 years of performing a one-man show about Thelonious Monk, Neal had come to appreciate the importance of exquisite timing.
“My daughter’s name is Lia Neal and she just made it to become an Olympic swimmer, and she’ll be swimming in the Olympics in 2012 in London, England, the 4×100 relay,” Neal said.
The audience applauded and cheered enthusiastically. “Lia is 17 years old,” he said, “the second African-American female swimmer to make it to the Olympics.”