A lot of forums have a standard ability to insert emoticons, but I feel it is part of the charm of HTG that we don't have that. It often ends up with emoticons all over the place with little meaning.
And I think textemoticons work perfectly well!
Or something like <grin>.
I do like nice visuals as much as the next one (one of the great pré's on Vista <LOL>) (ok admitted: Whs might be excluded there ;D),
so if you want to add a specific emoticon suitable to the occasion you can just as easily upload a nice gif or png to photobucket and paste that in.
In Photobucket you can sort images in 'albums', so you can make a special album for a couple of your fav. emoticons.
But hey! Make sure they do add something more than a mere textemoticon and no overkill please ;)
Edit: I took to long writing, you posted a lot in the meantime! LOL