This is a little thing, but it used to bother me. I prefer to use italics when quoting someone that I'm responding to,
Did you notice that kyjellico has lost his pants yet again?
and I decided that <lj user> tags didn't look right unless the icon was italicized as well.
I think that mib_khan was trying to eat his spleen.
I have this altered userinfo icon hosted on my site at http://DammitJa.net/lj/italuser.gif in case anyone else is weird or obsessive enough to also want to italicize their <lj user> tags... And I created another one for communities as well...