There are several likely stories as to why Tom Penn was fired. Dave did a pretty good job of breaking down the scenarios the other day, except for one. After extensive conversation on the matter, we still don’t have an explanation that fits. Not to sound too much like a (Star Trek) Vulcan, but the process of elimination has to take us back to the one scenario Dave didn’t want to discuss – that Penn was fired for personal reasons. I hope you don’t mind if I now happily wander into the realm of gross speculation, but as an anonymous internet blabber, this is my right… nah, my duty.
Tom Penn slept with one of Paul Allen’s 19 year old girlfriends.
As a bazzilionaire bachelor, Paul Allen without any shadow of a doubt has a stable of beautiful girlfriends. He is also very sick, and can’t spend "quality time" with them like he used to. Now, we are looking at a situation where the nubile young ladies were feeling lonely – they also happen to run in the same circle as a particular Blazer front office hot shot. Now let’s say there was an office St. Patrick’s Day party. Bing badda boom – three Smithwick's and a shot of Bailey’s later, everybody is doing things they regret.
We also know as a matter of fact that Paul Allen, like any bazillionaire, has certain eccentricities and paranoias. Instead of building giant wooden airplanes and storing his pee in mason jars, he installs lojacks on all his employees and girlfriends. He knew that Tom Penn and Sheila (yeah, that’s her name) were getting busy before THEY did. That won’t fly, of course, and Penn got canned for his transgressions.
You might ask, what does this have to do with Kevin Pritchard? It’s all too simple. Penn and Pritchard go way back, and now Allen is weighing whether he should hold Pritchard accountable for his boy’s actions. Maybe KP knew all along what happened and didn’t do anything to stop it.
Infidelity was with 100% certainty Penn’s terminable offense. Since the episode is embarrassing for all involved, that’s why nobody wants to discuss details. KP’s offense was inaction, and explains why he is on the frying pan, but not yet into the fire. You might think that this doesn’t explain why they had that "press conference" the other day –there didn’t seem to be an identifiable purpose other than to make KP look uncomfortable. Therefore, I will conclude that that WAS the purpose: to make him suffer, one of the punishments for inaction set out by Mr. Allen in his jealous rage. In related news, Sheila had her allowance cut back to $2,000 a week.
My theory is as impeccable as the Pelican Brief, and I’m just as nervous that a Vulcan might show up at my office and get me canned for blowing this whole thing wide open. Donations for my Caribbean exile are now being accepted by my paypal account.