Jan. 3, 2014 is J.R.R Tolkien Day (and his birthday)

acarlson@ledger-enquirer.comJanuary 3, 2014 

J.R.R. Tolkien, full name John Ronald Reuel, was born on Jan. 3, 1892. Thus, Jan. 3 is J.R.R. Tolkien Day. In honor of the author's birthday -- Tolkien, of course, created one of the most imitable fantasy franchises in the English language with "The Lord of the Rings," Middle Earth and its related fantasia, including "The Hobbit" -- the Tolkien Society advises a simple toast.

Per their instructions:

"To make the Birthday Toast, you stand, raise a glass of your choice of drink (not necessarily alcoholic), and say the words 'The Professor' before taking a sip (or swig, if that's more appropriate for your drink). Sit and enjoy the rest of your drink."

Why "The Professor"? Tolkien's academic background famously informed the fictional worlds he created, which came complete with whole languages and societies for his fantastical creatures, including dwarfs, elves and talking trees. For many, the world of Middle Earth, the primary setting for Tolkien's most famous stories, is as interesting as any of the stories themselves.

Tolkien's was imitably quotable, too. His most famous line may be one of his shortest: "Not all those who wander are lost."

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