Each friendship has a magnetic pull; a je ne sais quoi that brings you together, and keeps you together. Meet Michela and Cristina; driven, motivated, and beautifully normal. If their friendship had a mantra, it would be “drama free is the way to be.” I met them at Pravda in Soho to take a peak into their world. Pravda creates an atmosphere similar to that of Russia. Vodka aplenty on the menu, alongside caviar and tattered leather couches, we started our interview.
How did you meet?
Cristina: We met in 2011. So about two and a half years ago. We both interned at a magazine one summer.
Michela: We were chosen as interns our of thousands of applicants so it was kind of fate that we ended up together.
Cristina: I remember one of the first times we spoke at work you complimented my shoes, and you had a good sense of style which I noticed and appreciated right away because we both sort of stood out among less stylish coworkers (hint: we were not working at a fashion magazine!)
Michela: The first time went out as friends outside of the office was when Cristina invited me to go out to drinks with her and a few of her girl friends. I had just moved to New York and literally knew no one so I was so I really appreciated the friendly invitation! I love how Cristina is always down for a good time and always invites me to come along, whether it’s for drinks in SoHo, a hike in New Jersey, or a beach day in the Hamptons!
Why did you become friends?
Cristina: Aside from our sense of styles, we had many things in common. We’re both Italian vegetarians who cheat with prosciutto (we call our selves “prosciutto-tarians!”)
Michela: Haha yes! We really mesh very well. I think one reason for that is that we both have zero tolerance for drama in our friendships and in our lives. Becoming friends with Cristina who is so drama free was so refreshing!
Cristina: [Drama] is just a waste of time. We’re bonded over stories we have about “drama girls” from our past. Maybe it’s our personality. We’re both so easy going, that we attract these high energy, very intense people. But we’ve successfully been able to rid ourself of them, and we now have these great stories that we have bonded over. You can choose your friends, and you can choose the types of people you hang around with. So why would you choose those to be friends with people who are obsessed with drama?
Michela: I think that’s an empowering thing about moving to New York, especially on your own. You realize for the first time in your life that you can choose your friends, who you spend your time with. We both see the best in people, and that’s a great trait, but that can be a dangerous trait. You can get seriously involved in terrible drama, then you have to call it quits (graciously!). We both have scars from past friendships with extremely dramatic but it’s a blessing in the end because you know how to judge people better.
What do you normally do when you hangout?
Cristina: Michela introduced me to this amazing nail salon (tenoverten), so sometimes we go to get manicures together. But usually it’s going out for drinks.
Michela: We both are very career drive and work a ton so we our “me time” is often “we time.” I feel like in order to maintain your friendships in New York you have to use your precious “play” time to spend time with the friends you value most.
Do you feel like there are any TV shows today that are a quintessential representation of female friendship?
Michela: I watch Girls.
Cristina: Me too.
Michela: My apartment building has been in Girls twice!
Cristina: No way!
Michela: I love how the show hits home on the whole female friendship thing. It’s not perfect. They get in a lot of arguments. They’re all very different. But at the end of the day they love each other and that’s what matters.
Cristina: It’s very real. Sex and the City was very idealized. [Carrie’s] a freelance writer, but she’s buying Manolo Blanik shoes every other week. That doesn’t make any sense!
Michela: And her apartment is enormous.
Cristina: Girls seems more real. You just go to a party, you don’t go to a restaurant opening. You go to a party, you meet a random douche bag guy, and you go home with your friends…. It’s not that glamorous.
Do you think there is something about NYC that makes it hard to find friends?
Cristina: It’s strange to approach another woman and say “Hey, do you want to be friends with me?” How do you have that conversation? With a man it’s easy because you can flirt with him. How do you hit it off with a girl you just want to be friends with?
We are Gen Y – do you feel like technology has isolated us? Do you feel like we are so plugged in that we’re not looking around to strike up conversation?
Michela: It’s crazy that we live in this city literally full of people and we often just ignore one another, glued to our iPhones. We’re obsessed with “social” but we’ve become so anti-social at the same time. When you’re on the subway, in a cafe´, or in yoga class, it can be really hard to be the one who breaks the ice.
Cristina: The fear of rejection is sometimes scarier than asking a guy out!