Before we go ahead and answer the ever pressing question of, "Why do pen caps have holes in them?" We'd like to go ahead and dedicate this article to all of the people out there with serious oral fixations. We know it can't be easy to feel compelled to chew on everything from your nails to your writing instruments, but, hey! Could be worse, right? You could be a cigarette smoker. That said, smoking cigarettes isn't going to kill you immediately. A pen cap on the other hand? Well, it's definitely a solid contender. At least, it was, before BIC decided to do something about it.
There have been a number of instances throughout history of people fatally chewing, and subsequently, choking on pen caps. How exactly? Not to be grim, but the caps can get lodged in your wind pipe and cause you to asphyxiate. As far as dying goes, choking on a pen cap has by far got to be the most ridiculous — next to slipping in the shower, of course.
In attempts to rid the world of these senseless pen tragedies, which, according to The Independent is roughly 100 people in the U.S. each year, pen company BiC added a larger hole to the top of the cap. Added a larger hole increases air flow, thus increasing the chokers chances of surviving. As explained on the BiC website:
"In addition to help prevent the pen from leaking, all our BIC caps comply with international safety standards that attempt to minimize the risk of children accidentally inhaling pen caps. Some of these vented caps, like that used for the BIC Cristal, has a little hole in the top to comply with the existing safety standards."
Well, guys, that about sums it up. The hole in your pen cap isn't just there for aesthetics. Although, to be fair, we're sure that you didn't think it was. In truth, we imagine you've spent zero time of your life wondering about this, but, now that you know — you'll be the dude explaining it at the bar this Saturday night, right?
Lead Image via Getty