Today the AP decided to change its style guide to drop the use of a hyphen in “e-mail”. I feel vindicated.
When I was writing my books, lo those many years ago, I bucked the prevailing style guides and left the hyphen out. The hyphen in “e-mail” just looked wrong to me. “Besides”, I said, “there aren’t any other words that use the pattern ‘<letter>-hyphen-<word>'”.
Well, I proved myself wrong shortly after that:
A is the A-list of who’s the “in crowd”,
B is for B-school to make Mamma proud.
C is for C-note (the gangster’s small change),
While D’s for D-day which cut Adolf’s range.
E is for E-mail, an electronic note,
F is for F-word (that daren’t be spoke).
G is for G-string that dancers must wear,
and H’s for H-bomb to fight the Red Scare.
I is for I-beam to make a strong fort,
and J’s for J-school to learn to report.
K is for K-9, the cop that goes woof,
while L’s for L-bracket (to hold on your roof).
M is for M-dash (the one that is long),
with N for N-dash (all over this song).
O is for O-ring of Space Shuttle tears,
Q is the Q-tips you stick in your ears.
R is for R-value home insulations,
S is for S-set used in German nations.
T is for T-shirt that Americans wear,
and U’s for the U-joint of auto repair.
V is for V-neck which looks rather dressy,
X is for X-ray which acts to undress ye.
Y is for none else but Y-chromosome,
and if I knew Z I could maybe go home.
But you probably noticed I slipped past a few
I left out the P and W.
M-dash and N-dash are sort of a cheat,
But say what you will, they do keep the beat.
But if you know how to make this song better,
Send me a rhyme for your favorite letter!
Other people pointed out F-4, K-12, K-car, K-mart, N-word, O-levels, P-Funk, P-Furs, P-channel and n-channel, T-ball, T-square, U-boat, V-day, W-2, X- and Y-chromosome, and Z-buffering.