A Tutorial On the Proper Use of Emojis

I have a dear friend I call Lucy. I have blogged about her before (smelly car story) because she is such a fun and funny character and I have, oh, about a million stories and anecdotes about her in the 34 years I have known her. Of course the term “Lucy” is due to the I Love Lucy character on television, and I am the Ethel to her Lucy. Think of all of those predicaments, and those facial expressions. That is just like my real life Lucy.

Life is seldom dull with a friend like her. Many times, I find myself thinking back to something she has done, and it makes me smile, or even giggle., In fact, I highly recommend everyone finding at least one big character among their group of friends as it makes life more fun. (Many have a whole cast of characters among their friends, and especially their growing up friends, and that is even better.)

Back to the point of this particular piece. I have been absolutely horrified that people are using Emojis in, say, an INAPPROPRIATE way. Many people, like Lucy, need a major tutorial on which Emoji to use in any given situation.

As a recent example not involving Lucy, and I hate to even bring this up, but one of my writing goals is to EDUCATE the masses, so as a public service, I have to do this. A classmate of mine was horrifically murdered, and we posted this devastating news on our class Facebook page. Among the grief stricken fellow classmates who each said how shocked and saddened and in grief they were by this heinous act, one classmate simply put an Emoji in his comments. It was this one, copied below and also explained below from an online source:

Here is the web description of this Emoji:

Face with Tears of Joy emoji


“Face with Tears of Joy is an emoji, commonly used with the term LOL, featuring a jovial face laughing, while also crying out tears. It can also be used for joking and teasing. It is one of the most commonly used emojis on social media websites such as Facebook, Snapchat, Twitter and Instagram.”

Back to me: Of course, at our age, we all need reading glasses to see which tiny emoji we want to choose for any situation, but I am thinking that 60 year old and up people have no business using these things because they are seldom appropriately used. I am certain that our classmate who left that emoji, thought it was a crying emoji to express his great sorrow, but no sir, it is not.

Let’s get back to Lucy. When she discussed my big upcoming birthday during the quarantine and not being able to properly celebrate, she left three of the above laughing emoji’s. She meant it as tears and crying for my big birthday that would not come to fruition, but I did not know that until I asked her what was so funny about the fact that I could not celebrate my birthday with family and friends? She answered, no insisted, that the emoji is a crying one. Um, no Lucy, sorry, you need a tutorial on the proper use of emojis.

Even worse, later that week, my Lucy had her brand new bike stolen from outside her garage. She posted on a neighborhood site about the theft, and left these three emojis with it:

It therefore appeared that Lucy was posting the sad news and trying to get information on the theft while she was laughing her face off, as the description for the above emoji goes on web. Again, I questioned Lucy, and aside from admitting needing reading glasses, she was kind of confused as to why the tears on the above Emoji would signify laughing and not crying. She needs this tutorial!

As I said, it is a futile exercise teaching some in my generation on the proper use of these web emojis and maybe we should just refrain from using them. I have many friends who OVER-USE emojis, leaving every comment with a string of emojis that say absolutely nothing but perhaps they like the decoration on their comments. I know I overuse the exclamation point, but there really are people that leave about 10 emojis for every sentence they make, and who is straining their eyes to see the significance of each and every one of them on there anyway?

In case you were wondering, and again, I am trying to teach here, the crying emoji looks like the below:

That, my friends, is the TRUE crying emoji, where tears are literally running down the face. Oh and here’s a TIP – if there is a SMILING FACE involved in the emoji, it probably does not indicate a SAD emotion. (Again, see above laughing emojis.)

After I convinced Lucy that she was posting laughing faces with her bike theft, she began giggling, and I just said, “Oh Lucy.” She is really that cute. And I am giggling to myself thinking of her shocked reaction that she was rolling with laughter over the theft of her bike.

I told Lucy I would have to go through her keyboard with her and instruct her on the proper use of emojis and she was willing after I convinced her she has been using the wrong ones. It took her months and months to learn how to post photos on Facebook, and make posts on people’s walls, but I will not even go into that. Her children know this about her technological and web-savvy capabilities too, and to that they just give the eye roll emoji.


  • Very amusing! I’m in a Facebook group of our 55+ community. Most of the people in the group are 75+. They use emoj’s incorrectly all the time, along with sharing of scam stuff – i.e. click this and get a $500 Kohl’s gift card.
    On a different note, who was murdered from our class??

  • Leigh rheuban

    I got a kick out of this because people always tell me I’m very animated and when they look at my face they know what I’m thinking this was cute

  • “Who knew” that reading glasses were such a game-changer!!!
    I am happy to report that I no-longer use ALL CAPS when writing; after my kids told me I was SHOUTING!!!

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