Have you ever pictured Ronald McDonald in a dress? No? How about with long, flowing red hair?
The golden arches may fulfill a similar longing across the globe, but the way they do it is decidedly different from country to country.
In India, for example, it involves slapping:
Serving 68 million people in 118 countries, McDonald's is undeniably a serious business.
The Economist uses what it calls the Big Mac Index to compare currency rates between countries. At the start of 2013, for instance, a Big Mac cost $4.37 in the United States. By comparison, it was $2.57 in China, so the yuan was undervalued by 41 percent.
Here's a map of countries with McDonald's restaurants, showing the year they got their first restaurant:
(Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
Business aside, McDonald's ads provide a fascinating lens through which to view different cultures.
Take Turkey, for instance, which is working through some insecurity issues in this ad:
Israel, too, is sorting through some feelings toward the US establishment:
In Brazil, it's about channeling the best America has to offer, aka soul music:
In the Philippines, the only thing more universal than McDonald's is the language of love:
Egypt, too, tells a classic love story:
In Germany, the fantasies are about what you'd expect:
In Russia, they're, um, a little different:
And in Korea, it's just downright silly: