As for the "stick in the mud" issue:
The "Harry" referred to by Mad Dog is none other than the legendary SEAL, Trainer, Protection Specialist, Hollywood Tech Advisor and TFL Moderator, Harry Humphries. Harry and I were on a secret mission: to spend two days together without winding up in jail.
Given his background, Harry always moves toward water. I knew this. I didn't know how literally he follows his instincts. Harry directed his rented Blazer in a bee line over open country direct toward the semi dry wash...he paused only long enough for me to utter the words "Well, if you think we can make it..." and plunged in. We got about eight feet across and two feet down....straight down!
Three ranchers were sitting in a truck on the other side watching. One stepped out of the truck and said, in his best Mountaineer accent "Saw it right off", got back in and drove away.
Harry suggested that we carry the truck out. Harry picked up his end. I picked up the telephone. Mad Dog to the rescue. The day was saved.
The following day, we headed cross country and returned to the scene of the crime during a deluge. I'd had the presence of mind to buy tow straps and take two cars. Through no fault of his own, Harry's Blazer sucked right into the mud of a rutted track....it appears that the 4-Wheel drive of these vehicles is barely acceptable for dry gravel. I had to pull it out with my car.
Ignoble use of a Mercedes, you say? Poppycock. Bolderdash. Horse Hockey. It worked just fine.
In any case, we stayed out of jail. Harry's off to straighten out some Hollywood movie set or quell some small foreign war. I'm stuck with my gretest tormentor....Mad Dog McClung.