December 4, 2020

The Car History of Alex Beloff III

WE REFERRED TO CADILLACS ARRIVING FROM THE PLANT AS “CLARK AVENUE GOLD” BECAUSE BACK THEN THEY CERTAINLY WERE.  CADILLACS  THAT CAME FROM CLARK AVENUE ASSEMBLY PLANT THAT HAD BEEN THERE SINCE I THINK 1922.  YOU PURISTS OUT THERE, IT WASN’T COMMON KNOWLEDGE BUT THROUGH THE RIGHT SOURCES (AND YOU WON’T FIND IT IN PRINT ANYWHERE), YOU CAN ORDER A CADILLAC AND HAVE IT PAINTED IN ANY CADILLAC COLOR CLEAR BACK TO THE 50’S.  I HAD TWO CHOICES.  I WANTED THE 1957 CADILLAC LIGHT PASTEL GREEN, COLOR OF MY DAD’S NEW 1957 CONVERTIBLE, OR DARK GREEN FOR 1957 THAT WAS ADVERTISED NATIONALLY IN PUBLICATIONS FEATURING THE FLEETWOOD BROUGHAM.  IT WAS IN THE DARK GREEN 1957 CADILLAC COLOR.  HOW DO YOU KNOW THIS?  BECAUSE THE BUMPER FILLERS THAT SEPARATE THE QUARTER PANELS AND THE CHROME BUMPERS ARE NOT BODY COLORED BUT ARE PAINTED SILVER!

I ORDERED THE INTERIOR WITH WHITE LEATHER, 60/40 SEATS, GREEN CARPETS AND DASH, AND GREEN LACE WORK (PIPING) ON THE SEATS.  I NOW HAD THE ONLY ONE LIKE IT ON THE PLANET.  YOU SEE, I WANTED TO MAKE ALL OF MY 1973 CADILLACS UNIQUE TO TAKE YOUR EYE OFF THOSE HORRIBLE LOOKING FIVE MILE AN HOUR IMPACT BUMPERS REQUIRED.  THE LESSOR MAKES WERE REALLY AWFUL.  BUICK LESABRE BUMPERS LOOKED LIKE A PARK BENCH CHROMED.  THE CADILLACS WERE ARTFULLY SCULPTURED WITH TRADITIONAL SHOW QUALITY CHROME PLATING AND ABSENCE OF ANY BUMPER BOLTS OR GRAIN UNDER THE CHROME.

I HAD PEOPLE WHO HAD TO HAVE THE ONE OF A KIND COUPE DEVILLE.  THE CAR WAS DISPLAYED AT OUR FIRST ANNUAL BELOFF CADILLAC GOLF TOURNAMENT.  ONE OF THE GOLF PROS BROUGHT IT AND I NEEDED A RIDE HOME.

INTERESTINGLY ENOUGH, MY GENERAL SALES MANAGER, PAUL MAVERICK, AT BELOFF PONTIAC CADILLAC GMC ENDED UP OWNING THIS VERY CAR WHEN IT WAS TRADED IN BECAUSE THE GOLF PRO IS USUALLY IN A NEW RIDE EVERY YEAR .

FOLKS – GOLFERS – PAUL MAVERICK WAS NOT ONLY A SUCCESSFUL CAR MAN BUT A BIG BIG MAN AND A SCRATCH GOLFER.  IF YOU PLAY THE COURSE IN PERU, IT HELPS TO BE A MOUNTAIN GOAT . . . TUFF!

A BIT OF HUMOR:  PAUL AND I WERE GOING TO THE GOLF COURSE IN MY COUPE DEVILLE AND A PROBLEM . . .  THE BEAUTIFUL LOCAL GOLDEN RETRIEVER WAS ALREADY SITTING IN THE BACK SEAT.  PAUL SAID, GEORGE, SORRY YOU CAN’T GO THIS TIME.  HEART BREAK HOTEL FOR HIM.  GEORGE ALSO LIKED TO RIDE SLEDS ON SNOWY SLOPES.  HE WOULD EVEN PULL KIDS OFF SO HE COULD RIDE.

 

FUN OF HAVING A DEALERSHIP:

CLIFF WAGNER FROM CADILLAC CAME IN MY OFFICE AND CLOSED THE DOOR FOR A PRIVATE MEETING.  HE SAID, AL, I MONITOR YOUR FINANCIAL STATEMENTS EVERY MONTH.  SO DOES PONTIAC AND GMAC BUT I REALLY WATCH FOR POTENTIAL DISASTERS INCLUDING THE 13TH STATEMENT.  YOU’VE BEEN DOING VERY WELL MAKING ABOUT $10,00-$12,00 NET PROFIT.  IN THE MONTH OF AUGUST, YOU LOST $10,000.  YOUR EMPLOYEES ARE STEALING FROM YOU.  I SAID, HOW DO THEY DO THAT? HE SAID, YOU ARE ABOUT TO GET AN EDUCATION.  IT IS OUR FAULT.  WE KNEW YOUR SALES SUCCESS WOULD BE OFF THE CHARTS AND THE MONEY WOULD FLOW OUT THE WINDOWS.  THERE WASN’T TIME TO TEACH YOU HOW TO WATCH THE MONEY.  EXAMPLE:  DO YOU INVESTIGATE YOUR REPAIR ORDERS IN THE SERVICE DEPARTMENT?  ARE THEY IN NUMERICAL SEQUENCE?  IF NOT, YOU MUST FIND OUT.   YOU HAVE PAID THE PARTS DEPARTMENT TO DRAW NECESSARY PARTS.  YOU PAID THE TECHNICIAN AND YOU RECEIVE THE MONEY FROM THE CUSTOMER.  IF THAT REPAIR ORDER IS MISSING, YOU LOST MONEY FROM THREE PROFIT CENTERS.  WHERE ARE THE MISSING REPAIR ORDERS?  ARE THEY UNDER A CAR?  DID SOMEONE’S BROTHER IN LAW JUST GET A VALVE JOB FOR FREE AND PAID A REDUCED AMOUNT OF CASH UNDER THE TABLE TO THE SERVICE MANAGER, TECHNICIAN, PARTS AND OFFICE PERSONNEL TO KEEP THIS QUIET?  YOU CAN’T PULL THIS OFF BY YOURSELF.  MY INVESTIGATIONS ALSO REVEAL THAT THEY ARE PAINTING CARS FOR GIRL FRIENDS AND FAMILY WITH YOUR MATERIALS AND FACILITY AND YOU DIDN’T GET PAID.  THEY ARE ALSO TAKING HUGE SUMS OF MONEY OFF THE TOP OF CAR DEALS.

I SAID, CLIFF I AM NOT A THIEF.  I DON’T KNOW HOW THIEVES THINK.  HE SAID, YOU ARE ABOUT TO LEARN OR YOU ARE FINISHED.  I OPENLY ADMITTED THAT I WAS NOT STRONG IN BUSINESS MANAGEMENT CONTROL.  I KNEW HOW TO MAKE THE MONEY.   I JUST NEVER HAD THE NEED TO WATCH THE MONEY UNTIL NOW.  CLIFF SAID, YOU ARE GOING TO HAVE TO HAVE WHAT WE CALL IN THE AIR FORCE A “REDRESS OF RECORDS” AND CALL THEM TO SEE IF THEIR TESTIMONY MATCHES THE FILE IN YOUR HAND.  ONE EXAMPLE:  I CALLED A GENTLEMAN WHO BOUGHT A USED NICE 1969 PONTIAC FOR A GO TO WORK CAR.  HE SAID, YES AL I LOVE THE CAR.  I SAID, DO YOU REMEMBER WHAT YOU PAID FOR IT.  HE SAID, YES, I GAVE THEM $500 CASH AND $1,000 FINANCED AT PERU TRUST.  IN LOOKING AT THE FILE, THE SALESMAN CAME TO ME AND SAID, I HAVE GOT THIS PONTIAC SOLD FOR $1,000.  THAT MAKES US A FEW BUCKS.  DO YOU WANT TO GET RID OF IT.  I SAID, YES.  THE SALESMAN WENT TO AN OFFICE SUPPLY AND GOT A RECEIPT BOOK AND GAVE THE OWNER A RECEIPT FOR $500 AND STUCK THE CASH IN HIS POCKET.  CASH IS IMPOSSIBLE TO TRACE.

CLIFF WAGNER SAID, THIS IS WHAT YOU’VE GOT TO DO.  MONDAY MORNING YOU HAVE THE POLICE CHIEF AND A FEW OF HIS OFFICERS IN YOUR OFFICE AND HAVE PATRICK ROBERTS YOUR ATTORNEY PRESENT WITH SUBPOENAS.  I TOLD THE EMPLOYEES MY STORY.   THEY WERE ALL TERRIFIED WITH THE PRESENCE OF THE POLICE AND MY ATTORNEY.  I SAID TO ALL EMPLOYEES, YOU ARE ALL FIRED.  ALL OF YOU.  IF YOU WISH TO DISPUTE THIS, WE HAVE SUBPOENAS AND WE WILL GO TALK IN FRONT OF THE GRAND JURY AND YOU WILL LOSE OR YOU CAN LEAVE QUIETLY WITH YOUR ILL-GOTTEN GAINS. KEEP IN MIND, DON’T HAVE ANYONE CALL ME FOR A REFERENCE BECAUSE I WILL BE COMPELLED TO GIVE THEM THE FACTS.  I WILL NEVER SAY ANYTHING BAD ABOUT YOU PUBLICLY OR PRIVATELY.  SADLY MANY OF YOU ARE SOME OF THE BEST AND BRIGHTEST I HAVE SEEN.  THERE YOU HAVE IT.  PICK UP YOUR THINGS.  YOU HAVE 30 MINUTES TO VACATE THE PROPERTY WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE TECHNICIANS WHO HAVE VAST AMOUNT OF PERSONAL TOOLS TO RECOVER.

THE FOLLOWING MONTH I WAS IN THE BLACK AFTER BECOMING AN EXPERT ON HOW YOU CAN GET BAGGED.  EVEN THE PARTS MANAGER KEPT INVENTORY IN NUMERICAL SEQUENCE FOR 30 DAYS AND WAS SELLING MY PARTS OUT THE BACK DOOR FOR CASH.  SINCE NO ONE APPROACHED THEM, THEY KEPT DOING IT AND THEY WERE ALL IN ON IT TOGETHER.

RETURN

 

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