The Prancing Pony Inn in Bree is run by the perpetually absent-minded and harried Barliman Butterbur, a good and honest sort but prone to forgetting which way is up. As a result, Butterbur relies heavily upon his two hobbit assistants, Bob and Nob.
Nob spends most of his time at the Pony in the kitchen, serving guests, or running errands for old Butterbur, while Bob, as well as working in the kitchen, tends the Pony's stables. Bob is also a family-hobbit and has to keep a constant eye out for his precocious daughter, Lalia. Barliman chides them both constantly, calling them woolly-pated slowcoaches, but it is a friendly sort of scolding. All three know that the Pony would cease to function without their constant minding to the details that slip by Barliman.