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Elon Musk paused.
"You mean like me, personally?" Musk asked. "Oh."
The founder and CEO of SpaceX was thinking out loud about whether he would hitch a ride on one of his company's rockets. SpaceX has flown from milestone to milestone over the past year and is preparing an attempt to put humans in orbit next year for NASA.
Japanese billionaire Yusaku Maezawa is the first to sign with SpaceX to fly around the moon on the company's Big Falcon Rocket (BFR), targeted to launch in 2023. He wants Musk to go with him.
"As far as me going, I'm not sure," Musk said, sitting next to Maezawa at the event announcing the flight. "He did suggest that maybe I would join on this trip."
"Oh, yeah yeah, please, please!" Maezawa said.
"Alright, maybe we'll both be on it," Musk replied.
"Making humanity an multi-planetary species" is an informal credo repeated often at the company. When asked about the possibility of going to space himself, Musk took a step back to talk about how Maezawa's "very significant amount of money" to go to the Moon has "done a lot to restore my faith in humanity."
"To take their money and help fund this new project that's risky, might not succeed, it's dangerous, donating seats – these are great things," Musk said. The exact amount of money he is paying wasn't disclosed.
It may be over half a decade until Maezawa's artistic flight around the moon, so Musk has plenty of time to decide if he will go along. For now, Musk is not ruling out taking Maezawa up on his invitation.