So you’re biking along in a city of hundreds of thousands of other people all trying to get places simultaneously. And suddenly you run into an obstacle.


Yes, you run into a big giant Whatever.

A “Whatever” is a person who indifferently dismisses everything you see as supremely important (your life, health, along with necessary societal rules) with a word most commonly used by teenage girls in the mid-nineties. They do it in such a chronically disaffected way they cannot be argued with, not even engaging a discussion that checks off all the anti-cylist clichés. Any expression of passion or appeals to their empathy as a human being simply falls on deaf ears as they simply go about their life as if they are the only person on the planet. 

This is a disease and the symptoms are clear.




However, a cure is not so clear. Especially because there seems to be many other Whatever’s out there to help perpetuate this.

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27 Comments on "Whatever"

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Honestly a car in a bike lane is not a huge deal to me. Just like we try to tell motorists that it’s not that hard to change lanes to pass us, it’s also not that hard to leave the bike lane and go around a car. There should be no “swerving” if you’re paying attention to what’s ahead, as everyone operating a vehicle should be doing. And please, please please please, not “car lane”. There is no such thing as a “car lane”. That’s what motorists say to try to perpetuate the notion that bikes don’t belong or cyclists… Read more »
John Brooking

While I agree that bike lanes should not be used as parking lanes and motorist who do it should be ticketed, I also agree with Patrick that it’s not a huge operational deal. If a big truck (or any other vehicle) in the travel lane (not car lane) prevents you from merging out right away, just stop and wait until it’s clear.


I love it, especially the part about the styrofoam cup! Different demographic, but if you ever ride in da Bronx, bike lanes are treated as double parking zones.

Eric Herot

Actually I think the solution is to make the rest of the road a less hostile place so that going around a “whatever” doesn’t have to mean swerving into the path of an oncoming truck.


Why does there have to be swerving? Was the obstacle in the bike lane moving or suddenly appeared before you? If it’s a stationary object you should have plenty of time to check for a break in the traffic lane, signal, then merge into the traffic lane to go around the obstacle. Just as we say to motorists it’s not that hard to pass safely, it’s also not that hard to avoid obstacles in bike lanes.

Can I just ask you a question about this…. What would happen if you park your bike on the “car lane” (or travel lane as I fully agree it should be called)? Do you think car would be that keen to just avoid that obstacle in the lane without any complain? I’m not a big fan of specific bike lane as indeed this a message to say that bikes don’t belong or cyclists shouldn’t be using “car” road, but as this is mandatory to use them when they exist, this should be clear. Everytime I see a car parked on… Read more »

U-Lock + Mirror = whatever changing to WHAT THE FUCK? if people don’t care about others, I don’t care about them.

John Brooking

Don’t lower yourself to their level.


it’s not, it’s not even a punishment equal to the severity of the offense. a whatever person pulled into the bike lane to park immediately in front of me and proceeded to door me during evasive maneuvers as my rate of speed was too fast to stop. the resulting injuries were a grade 2 concussion and 3 bulging spinal discs (1 cervical 2 lumbar). A mirror is a small price to pay for putting people in that much danger