I totally agree, and I think this is why Clojure is one of the only lisp-y languages I've sunk any time into. A little bit of syntax sugar goes a long way!
I also find the design of Julia very interesting - they have a Python-like syntax, but parse it into s-expressions. This gives them some of the benefits of a lisp (easy meta-programming, code-as-data, etc) without being quite as painful to write. I think Elixir does something similar, too.
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