Three Times Elon Musk Was More Out-of-Touch Than Mr. Burns
Elon Musk would like to send a Xeet to the Prussian consulate in Siam.
Not long ago, the owner of Twitter (or X, or Xitter) seemed to be the internet’s favorite “hip, young billionaire” between his love of video games, his electric cars and his endless engagement in the memes and in-jokes of the terminally online. Then, roughly around the time Musk publicly sparred with one of the rescuers from the trapped Thai soccer team saga, cracks started to show in Musk’s facade as the public began to realize that, maybe, a mega-billionaire born into riches in apartheid South Africa might be a little aloof from the average joe.
As Twitter’s boneheaded rebrand charges relentlessly forward and Musk’s dream of owning a company called “X” comes closer to reality, it’s time to look back on those moments when the cartoonishly wealthy Musk was cartoonishly out-of-touch with the real world in ways that would make Montgomery Burns blush — if he still had enough blood in his face to do so.
The Time Elon Musk Hurt Himself Trying to Eat Pop-Tarts
Space journalist Eric Berger’s 2021 book Liftoff: Elon Musk and the Desperate Early Days That Launched SpaceX includes an anecdote from one of Musk’s colleagues in the extraterrestrial exploration industry in which Musk encounters worthy adversaries at his hotel’s breakfast bar — a packet of Pop-Tarts and a typical toaster.
“Elon comes down, and he walks over to the breakfast bar and he picks up a package of Pop-Tarts,” the man recalled. “He was transfixed. This was like a scene out of 2001: A Space Odyssey, when the apes examine the monolith. It was clearly the most fascinating thing he had seen that morning.”
When Musk finally realized that Pop-Tarts are best prepared toasted, he took the package to the toaster and inserted the two pastries into the slots — horizontally. After the Pop-Tarts were done cooking, instead of doing literally anything else, Musk dug his fingers in between the grates to get the treats that were out of reach, screaming “Fuck, it burns! Fuck, it burns!” at the top of his lungs.
Next time, just get a muffin.
The Time Elon Musk Didn’t Realize That Women Are Mammals
Musk-owned companies such as Tesla have long faced allegations from female employees that their workplaces were rampant with “nightmarish” sexism and sexual harassment. However, Musk’s personal problems with women extend past the office. In a Vanity Fair profile published in 2020, sources close to Musk disclosed “a high level of degenerate behavior with Elon,” including an incident in which an argument between Musk and his then-girlfriend exposed a lack of basic biological knowledge on behalf of the magnate.
“According to one person who witnessed an argument between Musk and a former girlfriend upon leaving a club one evening, Musk aggressively railed against her, asking why she had hair on her face (referring to the slight peach fuzz that everyone has, visible under the bright light of the club’s awning),” Vanity Fair reported. “‘Because I’m a mammal,’ the girlfriend replied, which only pissed Musk off even more.”
The Time Elon Musk Crashed Dave Chappelle’s Stand-Up Show in the City That Despises Him
This last one might just be a plagiarized Simpsons joke in terms of how perfectly Matt Groening captured the oblivious insecurity of a hated billionaire. In December 2022, at the height of Musk’s massive layoff campaign and amidst mass allegations of labor violations as the new CEO of Twitter, Dave Chappelle interrupted his performance at the Chase Center in San Francisco, 15 minutes from Twitter HQ, to announce to his probably mostly tech-oriented crowd, “Ladies and gentlemen, make some noise for the richest man in the world.”
Whatever Chappelle and Musk’s plan was for the rest of the evening, the crowd quickly chose their own course of action as they watched Musk confidently strut onstage with a waving hand — a wave of boos and jeers immediately derailed the event as Musk and Chappelle awkwardly postured around the stage, occasionally shouting out catchphrases like “I’m rich bitch!” as the crowd only grew louder in their anger and disapproval of a completely unwanted and unexpected appearance from the city’s Public Enemy #1.
Eventually, Chappelle cut the performance short, and he and Musk dejectedly shuffled off-stage without getting through a single bit. And, no, the crowd was not saying, “Boo-urns!”