Word of the Day: Kraken

Filed Under: Word of the Day

kra·ken[1]   [krah-kuhn]

n. ( often initial capital letter )

  • A legendary sea monster causing large whirlpools off the coast of Norway.
  • A fabulous Scandinavian sea monster perhaps imagined on the basis of chance sightings of giant squids. It appears in literature in a poem of Alfred, Lord Tennyson’s juvenilia called “The Kraken.”
[Origin: “monster of the North Sea,” 1755, from Norw. dial. krake.]

We have this lake in Arkansas called Lake Norfork.

The lake is huge and is like the water sports destination in Arkansas. Or, at least it is if you live in the northern part of Arkansas.

It’s not especially scenic or clean, for that matter, but when it’s over 100 degrees outside and your only other option is a garden hose, you do what you have to do.

The whole thing was created back in the 40’s when it was decided a dam needed to be constructed.

Why am I telling you all of this and what does Lake Norfolk have to do with a freakin’ Kraken?

I’m pretty sure one lives in Lake Norfolk.

OK. Not really. But I never did like swimming in Norfolk since I couldn’t see my feet. I always had this image of some kind of toe-eating fish/Kraken stealthily swimming right under me and gobbling up a couple of little piggies.

That is a rational thought for a five year old [or 20 year old] to have. I don’t care what you say.

There’s an urban legend every kid in Arkansas hears at least five times in their lives and as is the nature of an urban legend, there are multiple versions of the story.

I’ll tell you one.

Back in the 80’s, some folks were scuba diving at Lake Norfork – they were diving around the dam. The guys came around a boulder and face-to-face with a giant catfish. Luckily, no one died but imagine if that catfish had been a Kraken!!!

And don’t you tell me Kraken don’t exist.

Example of animals we were all like, “Those don’t exist, idiot!”:

Go here to see a big list: 10 Mythical Creatures People Didn’t Think Existed

Yeah. No Lake Norfork for me. Kraken. Yeah.


  1. [1]“kraken.” Online Etymology Dictionary. Douglas Harper, Historian. 04 Aug. 2010.