For as long as mass-produced chopsticks have been around, people have been ripping their chopsticks apart, rubbing them together like a boy scout earning his fire-starting badge, then diving into whatever cleverly named sushi roll they ordered.
Well, twitter user @bortofdarkness discovered the true function of the little square at the base of a set of chopsticks.
It turns out that that block at the bottom of the chopsticks is meant to be used as a stand for the chopsticks, a place for germaphobes to safely rest their chopsticks when taking a break. Granted, this trick won't work for every set of chopsticks, since it depends on the manufacturer, but at least we know the origin story now.
My trips to restaurants named "Chinese Food" in random shopping centers just got a whole lot more practical.