Driving and parking in Manhattan in 1974 was a daunting experience and I wished for a Sherman tank. Instead I found a brown 1969 Mercedes Benz 250C that I really liked and fit the bill. The Benz’s had a reputation of being built like a tank, and the coupé also seemed a bit sportier than the sedan, so I bought it. Soon our puppy grew into a 120 lb German Shepard, that didn’t have a mean bone in his body, and I was glad to have the the full seat in the back. The three of us would go for rides in the country on the weekends. Life was good.
One Spring day we stopped to pick up something in a store and left our puppy, Pasha, to guard the car. The weather was cool and we were only going to be gone 10 minutes maximum so we cracked the windows a little.
When we returned I immediately noticed something was wrong inside the car, even from halfway across the block. The car appeared to have something white inside. I had no idea what it was. There, in the middle of the back seat, Pasha sat with his ears down, looking embarrassed, surrounded by white foam. The entire car was filled with foam! It looked like he had a pillow fight with the seats, and the seats had disintegrated. We were dumbstruck.
A man walked over from a store behind us and said, “Somebody walked by with a large sheepdog and your dog inside the car went ballistic barking like crazy and tearing up your interior. The sheepdog, knowing your dog couldn’t get to him, kept barking back and inciting your dog.”
Pasha had never barked in anger before and we didn’t know what to do. He always played with all the dogs in the park and most of them gave him room because he was so big. Now that I think back, I don’t remember ever seeing another sheepdog in Central Park before.
It was time to sell the Merc. It didn’t feel right any more, besides I had my eye on another car.