A similar feature in another language is PHP's ability to mix in with HTML. It would be utterly trivial to convert the HTML sections of a PHP file to echo statements. Yet this tiny bit of sugar goes a huge distance toward making up for the language's short comings (also known as "almost everything else about PHP").
It's gotten to the point where I keep trying to use it in Ruby and getting annoyed that it's not there. Rails at least adds Object#try, but it's not nearly as nice.