How far would you go for a joke? Would you spend $1 million on a good cause if you could also make puns about it?
Most people might balk at that price tag. But most people aren’t Elon Musk, the eccentric SpaceX billionaire with a quirky sense of humour and billions of dollars in his bank account.
Musk donated a cool US$1 million to the TeamTrees tree-planting initiative on Tuesday, then proceeded to crack several acorny corny jokes about his charitable action.
Musk changed his Twitter name from “Elon Musk” to “Treelon” and switched his profile photo to an image of a forest.
He also dedicated his donation to Treebeard, a sentient tree character from The Lord of the Rings.
“I always like going South,” he tweeted, quoting the character from the films. “Somehow, it feels like going downhill.”
Musk made his donation to TeamTrees, a tree-planting initiative backed by several high-profile YouTube and Twitch personalities, many of whom are promoting it on the game Fortnite. The group aims to plant 20 million trees around the world by Jan. 1. Each dollar goes toward planting one tree, and the group has collected more than $8 million to date.
Musk tops the list of donors with his million-tree gift. Twitter founder Jack Dorsey is No. 2 with 150,000 trees. Internet celebrities MrBeast, Jeffree Star and Ninja have also donated thousands of dollars to the cause.
Musk appears to have learned about the initiative through MrBeast on Twitter.
“OK, sounds legit, will donate 1M trees,” Musk wrote in response to a tweet about the project. The tweet included a Fortnite video from Loserfruit, another streamer who is backing the initiative.
Sounds cool. Where are the trees being planted & what kind of trees?
— Treelon (@elonmusk) October 28, 2019
Ok, sounds legit, will donate 1M trees
— Treelon (@elonmusk) October 29, 2019
The money goes toward the Arbor Day Foundation’s efforts to plant trees where they’re needed most.
You can pay to plant a tree of your own here — and you can dedicate it to whichever fictional tree-related character you want.