This is a smiling face. Does it look upside-down? If you look at it a few more times (say, a hundred), it probably won’t.

I started keying reverse smileys sometime in 1999 or 1998. Somebody annoyed me by putting a lot of closing parens on their smileys, so I decided to provide enough opening parenthesis to sustain a balanced smiley-using net. Actually, that isn’t what happened. But it makes me look like a philantropic idiot, so I tell people this story. The other version makes me look like a lazy-ass geek, but it’s the truth, after all.

What really happened was that I used a reverse smiley once in a joke, then noticed that they are much easier to type, and then the habit stuck. I just can’t stop.

Sorry for the inconvenience. If the reverse smileys annoy you, please ignore them.