The Meaning Behind Elon Musk's Baby Name X Æ A-12


As every new parent knows, there is no greater feeling than looking into a newborn child's eyes, and then assigning it a name that reads like the phonetic spelling of the sound a dial up modem makes while connecting to the World Wide Web. Potentially, that is what Grimes and Elon Musk did in the wee hours of the morning when the couple welcomed a new child into the world. While Grimes has opted to let the child choose its gender, Elon Musk is a bit more ... well...

When asked what the child's name is, Musk also dropped this little nugget. The newest Musk heir is named X Æ A-12 Musk. The baby looks like more of an X Æ A-10 than an X Æ A-12, but this is their choice to make as parents. The internet immediately began dunking on the couple, but Grimes and Elon? These are smart people. If you can build a car to space, you deserve a little more credit. One very complex Reddit theory explains that the symbol (Æ) could represent Ash, the A-12 could be representative of the Archangel design effort by Lockheed Martin, and the X is a placeholder. Meaning the actual name would be [placeholder] Ash Archangel Musk, which is quite possibly the most Elon Musk x Grimes collaboration that could ever happen.

But there could be any other number of explanations for this baby name. 

What if perhaps this really was inspired by the noise of a dial up modem connecting to CompuServe circa 1999? What if, in a real Muskian twist, that's not the baby's name, but just its make and model? Perhaps this is a quantum physics equation the child solved while in the womb?


What if this isn't actually the name of their child, and just a public joke they're playing to keep the actual name of their child private?

Apparently, it's not a joke. Grimes has finally explained the meaning behind her and Elon Musk's baby, name, X Æ A-12. As she wrote on twitter:

A few hours after she provided a detailed explanation for the name of her baby, the father, Elon Musk chimed in to correct a slight error in her tweet. Grimes said the A-12 part of the baby's name, X Æ A-12, came from the precursor to their favorite aircraft, the SR-71. Musk responded to her tweet, offering a correction: "SR-71, but yes," he wrote. To which Grimes responded, "I am recovering from surgery and barely alive so may my typos b forgiven but, damnit. That was meant to be profound."

This story originally appeared on

* Minor edits have been made by the editors.

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Justin Kirkland
Justin Kirkland is a writer for Esquire, where he focuses on entertainment, television, and pop culture. Prior to Esquire, his work appeared in Entertainment Weekly, Hollywood Reporter, and USA Today. He is from East Tennessee and currently lives in Brooklyn, New York.
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