Toronto Sun Tuesday, April 28, 1998
Aging process is on Greenberger's mind

1001 REAL STORIES: The Rolling Stones may be pushing the chronological envelope that surrounds pop stardom, but they're whippersnappers in David Greenberger's books.

A "stand-up sociologist," artist and former activities director at a Boston nursing home called the Duplex, Greenberger has parlayed nearly two decades of rap sessions with the aged into pure pop culture gold.

There are his uber-hip U.S. fanzine, Duplex Planet; a series of records featuring Fred Frith, XTC, NRBQ and Yo La Tengo; a book, which received accolades from the likes R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe, and The Simpsons' creator Matt Groening; and, finally, a live-performance piece, which Greenberger brings to Bar Code (549 College) Thursday.

1001 Real Apes -Duplex Planet Stories features Greenberger reading segments from his 1993 book, Everybody's Asking Who I Was, with musical backing from U.S. band Birdsongs Of The Mesozoic.

His monologues cover everything from the Titanic to firecrackers to broken hearts to beer. All are based on the author's sometimes nonsensical, sometimes profound interviews with Duplex residents.

"In our culture, outside of seeing it occur in family members, we're given scant opportunity to witness the process of aging until we're already in the midst of it ourselves," writes Greenberger in the intro to the piece. "I've wanted examples of aging for myself, and I have made it my job to find ways in which to communicate those examples to others.

"It has been my aim to offer a range of characters who are already old. This allows one to get to know them as they are now, without constantly celebrating or mourning who they were before."