MAN! What's up with these shops?
I called an independent MB shop and they quoted $500 for shock/strut installation. I tried the local dealership and they quoted the same thing.
I looked at the shocks/struts and it doesn't seem that hard to replace them at all. I also did some searches here and although I didn't find any thread that discusses the replacement in detail, a lot of people have said that it isn't hard at all.
So tomorrow, I begin installation. I'll keep you posted with my progress, and maybe I'll do a write-up afterwards.