Category Archives: cryptids



“Live by the sword, die by the lake in the cabin you loved as a child that is now a great comfort in your old age.”

It’s as true today as it ever was. What the quote fails to mention is the mysterious animal inside the lake. If you plan to die in Kelowna, British Columbia, on the shores of Okanagan Lake, that animal is the ogopogo.

the handsome ogopogo

Lookin’ good, buddy!

The reclusive ogopogo does not often make itself known. For years at a time, all anyone will see from it is a couple logs it floats to the lake surface for funsies and the DVDs it’s returning to Redbox. It’s hard to know much of anything about this shy… sea serpent? Dinosaur? Gyarados?

Special powers

Whatever it is, the ogopogo is pretty great at hiding. And online chess.


The ogopogo is much like other enigmatic lake creatures, in that it hates having its picture taken. It went to a party with a photobooth once and had a panic attack.

Those Redbox DVDs are late.

Number of legs


Celebrity birthdays

The ogopogo shares a birthday with

  • Randy Haysbert[1]

  • George Railroad Martin, author of the Game of Thrones novelizations

  • The moon

What if it fought a bear?

The ogopogo would never show up to the weigh-in, with all those press photographers.

Is it noble?


Final rating

It’s not easy to rate the ogopogo, given how little we know about it. We can make guesses about it based on the fact that it’s Canadian, like that it cares too much about hockey and uses colorful bills with loons and Geddy Lee or whoever on them as currency. None of these foibles are sufficient to drag this gentle sea beast down the ratings by much.






[1]For every Dennis, there is an equal and opposing Randy. The Quaids are the coin for which we know both sides, but there is also Randy Hopper, Randy Rodman and Macho Man Dennis Savage, for example.

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Around this time two years ago I was in the throes of basketball fever. Fortunately, I survived to rate another day (and several more after that).

Now it’s that time again – March, when a young athlete’s fancy turns to basketballsmanship. Many of the basketball teams engaging in basketball contests this month will be invoking animals as their patron saints. They will seek aid from the husky, the bull, the hawk, the piece of wheat, the Native American human being and many more.[1]

One animal that serves such a role to inspire a team and imbue them with its power? The gorlok.


You heard me.

Special powers

The gorlok is a strange creature. It boasts the paws of a speeding cheetah, the horns of a fierce buffalo, and the face of the Saint Bernard.[2]


I don’t think we can really count that last one as a plus. Or else I greatly misunderstood a compliment I was being paid.

Number of legs

Two, plus two arms.

Time and place of birth

The Gorlok was born in 1984 in St. Louis, Missouri. It appreciates the Spice Girls on a much deeper level than you.[3] It thinks it’s involved in regional food disputes that do not concern it.

What if it fought a bear?

That would be a cross-conference match-up and it’s not a rivalry, so we don’t have much of a record to look at to make a prediction. Too close to call.

Is it noble?


Final rating

The gorlok is a mash-up of some dope animals. Something is lost, though, when you take all these bits of good animals out of context, mix them up together, and slap an Archie Andrews style one-giant-letter sweater on it.







[1]Well, one or two of those aren’t like the others.

[2]What has science wrought?

[3]Or so it claims, but it also claimed that Jennifer Lawrence was, in its words, “literally me.”

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You will find no animal who was more concerned about the recent NHL lockout than this week’s animal: the wendigo. And you’re not likely to find the wendigo either. At least not in any encyclopedia in the US News & World Report ranking of the most reputable encyclopedias.

wendigo (artist's interpretation)

The mainstream media doesn’t recognize the wendigo as “real.”

The wendigo is by far the most Canadian of all the cryptids. It has lived all over the Great North, from Chilliwack to Guelph and every Medicine Hat in between. It even has its own lake in Ontario. Its favorite musicians are Celine Dion and Rush. Half its diet is made up of poutine. The other half is human flesh, which is really the wendigo’s thing, not Canada’s.

Special powers

The wendigo is part owner of the Roughriders. It stays mostly behind the scenes, but it has privately advised the coaching staff on how to best defeat their loathsome rivals, the Rough Riders.[1]

It’s strong, fast, and has a thirst – a thirst a thousand bags of milk couldn’t cure – a thirst…for BLOOD!


No matter how much it consumes, it can never satisfy its unending hunger. Beware, for you too can suffer the curse of the wendigo if you resort to cannibalism or come in second on Canadian Idol.

Also, when the wendigo mentions “Smarties,” it means something crazy.

Canadian Smarties

What the HECK is this.

Number of legs



The wendigo has very few nemeses, certainly fewer than one would expect from an animal so intent on devouring people. This is because of how very polite it is. Sure, it may eat you, but it’ll say “soerry” and split a maple syrup Molson’s with you first.

The enemies the wendigo does have include the coaching staff, management, and players of the Rough Riders; the Incredible Hulk; NHL commissioner Gary Bettman; MuchMusic; the manager of the east Halifax Tim Horton’s location; the scarab; eighth grade maths teacher Mr. Ellis; and the Honda CR-V.

Fierceness factor

Pretty dang high.

Celebrity connections

George Wendt has long been rumored to have the curse of the wendigo, based on their similar names and voices. It’s not true, though. What is true is that Mick Jagger was a wendigo for a period of time in the ’80s until he was cured by David Bowie’s personal shaman. What else is true? Lots of stuff. But most relevant is the fact that the wendigo was best friends with Alex Trebek in college, and they still keep in touch.

What if it fought a bear?

Man, it eats a bear like three times a year when it’s hard up for poutine and/or human flesh.

Is it noble?


Final rating

I know I established there’s no such thing as monsters. But when people talk about monsters, they’re talking about a group that includes the wendigo. And the wendigo is the nicest of the bunch.

On the other hand, given half a chance, it will eat you alive, covered in gravy. If you think I’m okay with that, then you can just take straight off, hoser.





[1]The wendigo is seemingly responsible for pioneering the revolutionary “driving a zamboni into the endzone” strategy which continues to see occasional use in the CFL to this day.

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