Tolkiens of Affection

December 12, 2012
Bilbo Baggins (Martin Freeman), despite being a singularly adventurous hobbit, would probably love to join the Potato of the Month Club.

Nothing ventured, nothing gained is the take-home lesson of “The Hobbit,” which will premiere in the first of three live-action movies this weekend. We suspect that nothing ventured can lead to a lot gained, if what you really want is to sit curled up in a chair in your house stuffing your face, thinking about how much it would suck to be outside. That’s the true hobbit way — and if you’re one of those folks, or know one, this is your gift guide.

Cluck and Cover
You may be trapped in a drafty house, but at least your chickens can enjoy Middle-earth comfort. Wooden Wonders’ chicken coops ($995-$1,595, Etsy.com) are built to resemble a traditional hobbit residence, with round doors and a shape reminiscent of the hills into which hobbit holes are traditionally built. Disclaimer: We are not liable if dwarfs and wizards start soliciting your chickens for quest assistance.

Hobbit-tual Users
Many have assumed that hobbits’ enthusiasm for pipe-weed is one long stoner joke. Bilbo and Gandalf’s fragrant pipe-weed is — as far as canon is concerned, anyway — just tobacco. The Middle Earth Sampler ($10, Justforhim.com) includes five different tobacco blends, including Longbottom Leaf, Treebeard and Shortcut to Mushrooms. Wait, maybe it IS all a big drug reference …

The Power of Tuft
Hobbits don’t wear shoes — the soles of their feet are leathery and the tops are covered in hair. Some of us come by lustrous foot fur naturally. Others can fake it with ThinkGeek’s Furry Adventure Slippers ($20, Thinkgeek.com). Wear them to pursue treacherous, un-hobbit-like activities, such as climbing stairs.

Just Add Starch
Hobbits are simple yet gluttonous folk, partial to good plain food. And mostly they don’t like leaving their houses, so getting that food delivered to their doorsteps is ideal. The Potato Sampler of the Month Club ($39.95/month, Woodprairie.com) fulfills both requirements with its regular shipment of 8 pounds of potatoes — three new varieties — every month.

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Rudi Greenberg · December 12, 2012