Saturday, January 17, 2009

Reflections at Russell's

I hadn't been to Russell's in a long time and my friend suggested it for lunch yesterday. There's an elegant calm to Russell's even though the menu's casual. The service couldn't have been better. There are about a million things on the menu, but I had the BLT (with avocado) because that's my favorite. But this isn't a restaurant review. This is just noodling around with the camera and hoping for a fun picture. I'm not even sure how this one happened. There must be a window beyond the window, creating a reflection of the reflection.

My friend and I did a lot of talking and listening in that way women learn about each other. She's kind of a new friend, one of those people I knew right off I was going to like. Sometimes you meet someone and it's okay, that was nice, bye bye. But sometimes you just know you're going to be friends.

I don't know why that is. It's very human, isn't it? Something tells us either we have things in common or we don't. We don't have to agree on everything (wouldn't that be dull?) and we don't have to be best friends (how many BFFs is too many?). But we know when we're going to find similarities in things like where we came from or how we were raised, books we like to read or things that get our creative juices going.

When you meet someone, how do you know you're going to like them (or not) even before you know much about the actual person? I think it's because we see ourselves reflected in them.

17 comments:

Cafe Observer said...

So, P, how do girls think guys "learn bout each other"?

I rarely go to Russell's since it's in the Old Town, but I do like the ambiance of it like you. Had an old/dead tasting Belgian Waffle there last year.

Mister Earl said...

It seems like it's Burger Day in Pasadena at Petrea's and Ben's.

Interesting comments, P. There are some people who are always mistaken for other people. It happens to me quite a bit. People say, "Do you have a brother?" "Do you hang out at...?" I think in part it has little to do with physical features, but more with a vibe that the person has that makes you feel comfortable or familiar with them. Since they can't quite put their finger on it, it translates into thinking it's a physical similarity.

Petrea said...

C.O., from my observations men get to know each other via joking and verbal sparring.

Mr. Earl, I wasn't thinking of physical similarity, but that's probably part of it in a general way. We do tend to hang out with people who are "like us." Interesting thought.

altadenahiker said...

I don't think that's what Earl is saying. His point is that some people just make others feel comfortable -- it's sort of a gift. And if you feel comfortable with a relative stranger, then you tend to think it's because they remind you of someone.

and I don't think men are the only ones who like verbal sparring. It's my favorite hobby

Petrea said...

I get you now, Mr. Earl. Thanks, Karin.

I don't mean to say men are the only ones who like verbal sparring. But I do think that's how men find out about each other. I also think it's an element in flirtation. I think women get to know each other by talking about families, friends, personal history, etc. More personal stuff.

I'm generalizing. It's not like I've done a scientific study.

St├ęphane Kardos said...

I love Russel's, I go there al lot, I like the light, because of the big windows, watching people passing by, I can be there with my sketchbook and have a good time. And their "croque-monsieur" is great! (I have to take my Mum there when she will visit, to make sure that the croque monsieur is actually good and that it's not me that lost my palate since I left Europe :)
See you tomorrow.

Mister Earl said...

You are correct, Karin, that's what I was talking about. It's my way of trying to explain why when you see some people you think, "I know you from somewhere," and those people have that happen all the time.

Recently I was visiting my mom at the retirement community where she lives. I was in the elevator with another woman who lives there and her son and daughter-in-law. The d-i-l said, "You seem familiar." I said, "Yeah, I get that all the time." She said, "No, I really do know you, do you live around Pasadena?" "Yes," I said. "Do you dance?" "Yes," I said. "I know you. I've danced with you before at PBDA!"

OK, so that time she really did know me.

Jilly said...

Love the lights, colours, reflections. Looks a super place.

I love your words on friendship and why it is that of all the people we meet, sometimes we feel an immediate kinship, an understanding. Perhaps it is that we see ourselves in the other person but I sometimes think we recognise something that we need or that we can offer so that we can grow - so that we can walk the walk more easily in this life. You are right tho, it's a definite recognition. And we don't have to have actually met that person - it can happen via emails and blogs. A like-minded sister. Jilly, shut-up, you are being verbose...

Mister Earl said...

Wow, Stephane. Nice sketches! I know Ronnie's. It's right across from the Coffee Gallery. I think Laurie somehow entices people to bring those cars to South Pas. Sorry to read about your father.

Mister Earl

Laurie said...

What a wonderful way to start my day, Petrea!!!

I love this shot of the reflecting chandeliers. And I truly adore what you wrote. (I agree!)

Margaret said...

Beautiful post, Petrea. I'm with Jilly. I find myself excited about getting to know people who possess qualities I admire and wish I had more of. For example, I see myself as sort of spatzy, and I always love friends who seem naturally at ease and calm. I also think I worry a lot, so I always love to be with friends who make me laugh and who help me to not take myself to seriously. But what I love about growing older is that I feel like my friends are all so different from me and from each other. I love that.

Katie said...

It's fun to let my eye wander all over this photo and try to decide what's a reflection of what. Plus all the lamps are really cool. BLT with avocado - I must try that!

I met quite a few new people last year and it's hard to pinpoint that elusive element or feeling that led me think I'd want to get to know certain people more than others after a first meeting. A good indicator however was saying -- "Hey let's get together again tomorrow!"

Virginia said...

Don't you think that's how those of us that blog gravitate to each other as well? I think I do. Maybe not all the same qualitiesi each , but we are drawn to each other for one reason or another and make that fabulous connection as friends, even though we haven't met face to face. I know from meeting a few blog or email friends recently that it was just like we had known each other for a long , long time. What a wonderful experience. My friends here were skeptical at first , but I think now they are secretly envious of my new found friends around the world. I am so very grateful for you all!

Petrea said...

Stephane, you remind me of a British woman I used to know who returned to London each year to keep her accent fresh.

Hee heee, Mr. Earl. What if I recognize you when I meet you?

Talk away, Jilly. You're right. Well, at least I agree.

XO Laurie.

Isn't that great, Margaret? I like more people than I used to, as well. I think I used to be more limited.

Katie, for all your world travel, I'm amazed you've never had a BLTA.

Virginia, so true! I'm very grateful for blogging and amazed at how it's expanded my experience and connections, worldwide as well as locally. I've only been doing it a year and it has brought me more than I can say. I'm old enough to think of the worldwide conversation as a miracle.

Cafe Observer said...

I think the deep lesson from this photo essay of Petrea's is: we should NOT, "tend to hang out with people who are like us."

I don't. That's why this dog is around you crazy people.

But, I'm dog-tired tonite. So, I don't think I'm up to meeting a brunch of you homosapiens tomorrow. Especially some of those radical women bloggers. So, I think I'll send Mike -one of my human assistants- in my place instead.

~mona~ said...

Strangely, I sometimes find that I initially feel distaste for people who will eventually become my close friends. I've seen it happen more than a handful of times.. I meet somebody and think later "they *really* rubbed me the wrong way," or I've told somebody, "I just talked with somebody who I had the weirdest feeling of dislike for..." then, eventually find ourselves indispensable in each others lives...

I think it's because they pushed my buttons... hit nerves... opened tightly shut doors (how many more can I come up with??) that were uncomfortable, but later are what made that person and I find deep reasons to get to know each other.

Petrea said...

Hi Mona, thanks for your visit and your very interesting comment. I can think of a couple of very important and dear relationships in my life that started off this way.