/me looks down at her t-shirt, which - appropriately enough - bears grimace's likeness, and sees no apparent racial subtext.

apoxybutt is very close to the truth. this is just a theory, so feel free to quickly discount it, but i had always sort of thought that grimace represented a foodstuff. you know how the other mcdonald's characters (hamburgler, the fry guys..) represent mcdonald's menu items? i posit that grimace represents whatever odd, mushy substance they really make their food from. picture it.. somewhere, at a hidden mcdonald's lab in the base of some misty volcano, there is an operation not dissimilar to a giant play-doh factory, where shapeless and rubbery purple goop is molded, dyed, and blandly flavored, then left out to dry until it assumes a form more or less convincing enough to pass for whatever it's supposed to be. this would explain the bizarre uniformity of the vegetables, the meat, the buns, the condiments, the fact that you can go to any mcdonald's anywhere and order a cheeseburger that tastes exactly like the ones they serve in your hometown.

look at the mcdonald's cheese and tell me you disbelieve it could have been a substance akin to silly putty at some point in its life.

grimace is the soul of mcdonald's, the truth. ronald mcdonald is marketing - a pretty face on the product - grimace is the evil but clueless, yet oddly borg-like ceo, sitting in some secret office somewhere, guiding the culinary fate of the free world.