Man on the Floor! by Daniel L. Coberly
"A must read! Teaching DoDDS kids in one of the schools Coberly attended, I felt the truth and insights he captured. His book is remarkable in scope. It's huge, well-paced, absorbing, and it helped me understand better how the military itself operates and influences the inspiring young people we struggled to support. This isn't a scan and set down book—it's a book you'll pick up again and again to add to your wealth of understanding because it's so well written he'll pull you through the parts you'd thought to skip but didn't. He'll delight you with the areas you yourself recognize. This book is powerful, humorous and sad all together, like life. No matter what you already know I guarantee you'll learn from this book."
—Carol O'Donnell-Knych, Wurzburg Am High School, 1968-1994, author of A Cold War Teachers Tale and Reconnections
"I felt myself ‘back in the day’ while reading this fictionalized memoir. I could almost breathe in the stifling humidity of Fort McClellan, Alabama, and recall the cries of 'Man on the floor!' in the barracks. It took me back, to those early days, and to Germany too. I recognized those crafty NCOs, and some of the evil officers in others I had known but I reveled in the ways that the author adapted, overcame and moved on. I recommend this book to anyone who served in the last thirty plus years—we can all see ourselves in these pages."
A wonderfully unique, fun to read, page-turning mix of satire, serious social commentary, and witness to signs of the times, Man on the Floor! is a must-read story that must be told. Author Dan Coberly will grab your attention with vivid descriptions of life as a small boy of a U.S. military father and a French war bride trying to make sense out of a brave new world in post-WWII Munich and Verdun.
He walks us through youthful enthusiasm while growing up in a Cold War military subculture through the 1960s and 70s, wide-eyed culture shock encountering race relations, and anti-Vietnam war sentiments that became a scathing indictment of the Vietnam "Error" and "democraZy". Somehow, during the 1980s and beyond, he survives man's inhumanity to man during otherwise humorous careers as a soldier and a government bureaucrat around the world, shaping maturity and wisdom along the way.
Author Daniel L. Coberly has lived and worked around the world, first within a military family, second as career soldier, third as a senior government bureaucrat. A former senior correspondent and Pacific Bureau Chief at Pacific Stars & Stripes daily newspaper in Tokyo, he is an award-winning writer of several historical books and countless newspaper and magazine articles. He's also edited many national publications for private groups. Coberly has been honored with more than fifty awards for writing, leadership, and distinguished service. He is a member of the U.S. Army Public Affairs Hall of Fame.