Elon Musk can read a room -- getting ahead of potential groans and eye-rolls over him being named TIME's Person of the Year by sprinkling some adorableness on the ceremony ... courtesy of his kid.
The Tesla and SpaceX chief popped in for a Q&A Monday night in NYC, not too long after it was announced he was TIME's number 1 person for the entirety of 2021. His entrance turned out to be a big fat father-son love fest, 'cause EM trotted out X Æ A-12 for the sit-down.
It's pretty hilarious ... as soon as Elon comes into the room with X in his arm, just about everyone lets out the expected "awwwws" that come in the presence of any toddler.
X's appearance definitely softened any would-be tension that might've existed among the reporters and spectators there ... 'cause, as you may have read or heard, not everyone was all that thrilled with Elon getting the huge honor.
Nobody probably would've made a scene or anything, but bringing X along for the ride is definitely a good PR move on Dad's part.
As for the actual interview itself, Elon talked about a lot of stuff -- including whether he considered cars or rockets more important, and whether he'd ever get his ass up into space like his billionaire rival, Jeff Bezos.
Meanwhile, young X was on his best behavior (for the most part) ... not really fussing too much, and listening to his pops chat it up in what was almost certainly a new environment for him.
Speaking of baby X, his mom chimed in on Elon's big cover shot ... writing, "And, he cut his own hair for this pic too - icon." They may not be together anymore, but she seems to still have love for her baby daddy -- unless that was totally sarcastic. 🤔