Viral: Elon Musk Passed Out Having Too Many Shots In Moscow
Image Credit: Image Credit: Frederic Legrand - COMEO /

Vodka shots are one of those drinks that are best suited to the young, and somehow, outside of the setting of college parties, they lose a lot of their glamour. Apparently, this is something that Tesla and X CEO Elon Musk found out the hard way back in 2002. In the new and highly anticipated biography by author Walter Isaacson, the SpaceX founder related the story of a long night of partying in Paris and how that led to him passing out at the table during a meeting in Moscow the next day. 

As per the story related to Isaacson, in the early 2000s, Musk wanted to create a venture that would inspire public interest in space exploration and proceeded with his first plan, ‘Mars Oasis’ which would send a greenhouse into space. To further that goal, Musk recruited engineer Jim Cantrell and along with Founder Institute CEO Adeo Ressi, they arranged a meeting with a group of unnamed Russians to negotiate a deal to buy rockets

The journey to Moscow included a stop over in Paris where Musk partied late into the night and the next morning he arrived at the meeting a little worse for the wear. Isaacson describes the hangover as leaving Musk “ragged” and unfortunately for him, this wasn’t corporate business conducted the American way, he was about to take on a meeting Russian-style

Musk and his two associates met with their hosts in the back room of a Moscow restaurant where they were served "small bites of food interspersed with large shots of vodka." The trio were also gifted a bottle of vodka each, each with a picture of the recipient on Mars as the label. According to Musk’s calculations, the weight of the food was approximately equal to that of the vodka. Unfortunately, the new imbibings compounded with the excesses of the night before proved to much to handle, and as Isaacson writes, “Musk, who was holding his head up with his hand, passed out, and his head slammed into the table.”

Earlier this year Musk admitted to not being a big drinker saying that he doesn’t like the 'taste or effects of most alcohol' but admitted that, “there is something quite beautiful about red wine in a fine glass." And while the vodka may have got the better of him, this isn’t the first time he’s partied hard before an important meeting, and once joked about having to ‘sleep in his car’ after a night out in Los Angeles before jetting off to meet French President Emmanuel Macron where he was photographed unshaven and wearing the same boots he’d been seen in the night before. 

He came away from the Moscow meeting empty-handed but returned later to try and purchase two Dnepr rockets for $18 million. The Russians reportedly wanted $18 million for each and mocked him saying 'Oh, little boy, you don't have the money?' and upped the price to $21million each when Musk pushed back, according to Cantrell. The Mars mission may not have gone ahead as planned, but it must have sparked a new idea in his mind because just two weeks later, Musk founded SpaceX which is reportedly worth over $150 billion as of July.