Charlie Miller's worried about you, and the economy of Connecticut.
Miller knows the affluent and he's noticed some of them aren't quite as affluent as they used to be - and that's not good news for Charlie.
Charles Miller's made a living selling high-end automobiles for decades.
I met Charlie in the mid-1980's when he was among the top Porsche Salesmen in the world. Charlie was #12 in 1988.
You don't sell to that caliber clientele in a polyester sport coat using glib lines like "state of the art" or "whadda I havta do to put ya in a car today?"
Quite the contrary, knowing the product backwards and forwards is virtually required for success. Miller was always beyond encyclopedic. After 35 years in or around the automobile business, I've only seen 3 or 4 others even in his league; he's fascinating to listen to.
More importantly, a good salesman is observant and learns to read and size others up, often pretty well too. Law enforcement profilers could learn from automobile salesmen consummate at their craft.
High end automobiles largely attract two separate prospects.
Upbeat successful people that are almost always a pleasure to be around and to deal with and of course the "others" - the folks that send their shirts out to be cleaned pressed and professionally stuffed.
Miller can tell one from the other.
For the past several years, (now known as "Chas") Miller, has been representing a large Lexus dealership where I stop in to see him occasionally.
Considering the man has a client file dating back decades to when new 911's wore window stickers below $47K, Miller no longer has "bad" years; he has moderate, good, and occasionally fabulous years.
Never-the-less, Chas has noticed signs he's seen during previous economic downturns but notes that many of his confederates elsewhere in the country are often not sharing the same experience as of late and that gives him concern.
Miller and I shared a couple of hot-dogs at Mickey's in E. Hartford recently and the conversation turned to gubernatorial candidates.
I ticked off what I saw as the strength's and weaknesses of various contenders in both parties but noted that only Fedele has the life's story worth running on; immigrant, worked hard, stayed straight, built a company from nothing to a national firm, no layoffs and created hundreds of jobs and remained a decent likable normal guy that I've called "Mikey" to his face and not gotten in any trouble for it.
Charlie asked, "You've called him `Mikey'?"
I nodded, then Charlie took out his checkbook and asked, "What's the name of his campaign again?"
As he wrote the check and filled out the required donor form he added;
"We need someone that gets it and has done it. Not some policy wonk; and a friendly guy that's not uptight will get us a lot farther too."
Charles Miller knows a nice upbeat successful guy sometimes without even meeting them in person; and he can sell more cars if more people have jobs.