When we talk to people in person, we communicate with more than just words. Body language and facial expressions let people know if we're kidding, angry, or sad. When you send E-mail messages, it's nice to be able to convey emotions, and not just words. Emoticons were created to try and let the other person know how you feel by using simple keyboard symbols. The most basic one is the smiley face. First put down a colon, followed by a hyphen, then a close-parentheses. When you look at it sideways, the colon becomes two eyes, the hyphen represents a nose, and the parenthesis is a smile. By changing it around in various ways, you can change the emotions it expresses. Going from a close-parentheses to an open-parentheses makes an unhappy frown. If you replace the colon with a semicolon, it gives the impression of a sly wink. For a shorthand version, you can leave out the nose. Creating new and funny emoticons is a hobby for many E-mail users. Try some experiments with different symbols and you could come up with a new classic.
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