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Gilded Perkins puts ego yacht up for sale

Turns to phallic underwater craft for compensation

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It looked to us like Tom Perkins could afford the dinner bill. But, we guess, times are tougher than we thought even for Silicon Valley's elite.

Just last night, we spotted the famed venture capitalist Perkins dining at one of San Francisco's more ancient restaurants - Jeanty at Jacks. The place has been around since the 1860s and is named after the good old day's favorite fare of jackrabbit. Dressed in a black suit and blood red tie, Perkins seemed to be enjoying himself and chatted away with a grey-haired male companion.

We couldn't quite catch the topic of conversation, but it might have been about Perkins' monster yacht known as the Maltese Falcon. Perkins is looking to move the 289-foot plaything for about euro;150 million.

He toldthe Wall Street Journal that "My pleasure comes from the technical and aesthetic challenges of new yacht projects more than from cruising aboard the finished boat. I would now like to indulge my interest in ’sports’ submarines and maybe to build a specialized boat to use as a sub carrier."

Does Perkins really need some extra cash? Er, no. He's rich beyond belief after having funded a number of the world's most prominent technology companies.

We're hoping that fellow boating enthusiast Carly Fiorina steps in to buy the boat as some sort of revenge for being booted out of HP, in part, by then board member Perkins. She'd look much better on the deck in a bikini than Warren Buffett or - god forbid - Carlos Slim in a speedo. ®

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