Little known fact about me:
I am a huge pen-chewer. It is a totally unconscious bad habit; I truly have no idea that I am doing it.
This was quite embarrassing for me in college when I would ask a friendly girl next to me if I could borrow a pen to take notes during class. At the end of class, as I handed it back to her, I would suddenly realize...The shaft of that pen is now destroyed. Literally, destroyed. When I am concentrating, when I am stressed, I chomp pens down to nothing in a matter of minutes. Sometimes I actually bite off chunks of the plastic. It's probably bad for my teeth. (Sorry, Ry.)
My students occasionally ask to borrow pens during class. Without thinking, I say, "Sure, they're in the cup on my desk." Then I have to hear comments like, "Ewwww! I'm not touching that!" (To which I respond, "Get your own stinkin' pen then!") or "Mrs. Nielson, do you have a dog?" (To which I respond, puzzled, "No--why?" and then I realize.)
My closest friends often return my pens to me. They'll say things like, "I found this on my kitchen counter, and I knew exactly who it belonged to!" I guess I have a rather distinctive bite mark.
Anyway, I just finished a five-hour long grading session. It was painful.
I started with a brand new mechanical pencil. I ended with this:
I truly had no idea that I was chewing on anything as I graded. Crazy, huh?