In a classic Seinfeld episode, Elaine gets mad at her boyfriend when he shows her a phone message announcing the birth of her friend's baby. She can't believe that he didn't use an exclamation point at the end of the sentence. He replies, "Maybe I don't use exclamation points as haphazardly as you do." An argument ensues, and he storms off adding, "Well you can put one at the end of this...I'm leaving!"
Later when Elaine tells Jerry about their fight he says, "I never heard of a relationship being affected by punctuation." Of course it doesn't help matters that Elaine is in the midst of editing her boyfriend's manuscript.
The exclamation points escalate when Elaine's boss Mr. Lippman reads aloud from her final draft: "It was a damp and chilly afternoon, so I decided to put on my sweatshirt (exclamation point)! Get rid of the exclamation points. I hate exclamation points."
This episode was written twenty years ago, and most men still aren't comfortable around exclamation points. Sure some men will insert the occasional punctuation mark, but only during private conversations with women, or close male friends.
Society is slow to accept changes in punctuation. I know a woman who wouldn't go out with a man who sounded absolutely perfect for her on a dating site. His only crime was adding a smiley face at the end of his email.
Fortunately, the blogging community is an exception to this rule. It's safe for male bloggers to let their hair down while tossing out exclamation points, smiley faces, and lol's. Their willingness to express their feelings while supporting other bloggers shows strength and courage. Now that's certainly worthy of an exclamation point or two!!