Joe Maggard was the corporate representative of burger chain McDonald's between 1995 and 2007, tasked with dressing up like the junk food loving clown to make burgers seem like fun and exciting things for children to eat.
Despite not being the official Chief Happiness Officer any more he still continues to dress up like Ronald and spread the message that it's "OK to have a burger" but not for every meal, continuing to attend carnivals in character under the belief that being Ronald is more of a "calling" than a job one can simply retire from. Like being Superman or a plumber.
He talks about the method acting process of becoming Ronald, saying: "It's not Joe acting like Ronald, Joe's not quite as cool. Ronald is funnier." Plus he does some swearing while being interviewed in full makeup.
It's worth a watch. You think the man's going to be a nutcase, and he is, but not in a bad way. Maggard still has the Ronald clown costume and the skills to do his own makeup – and presumably a legal agreement from McDonald's to continue doing so – and is ready to leap into action at a moment's notice, should be spot a child in need of some gentle encouragement to consume a branded meal. [Guardian]