Sunday, January 31, 2010

[One-Shot] Wishes

Author's Note: I will be doing one-shots for the time being because it's all my JGS-PSH mind can do these past few days. And just so I can keep updating this blog for my readers. Besides, it's fun to write them and read them as well (I'm a fan of Joongbo one-shot fics!). So I hope this satisfies the craving for our resident couple for now. : )


She’s wearing her heart on her sleeves again, Manager Jun sighs as he reads Shin Hye’s latest diary entry.

Must be the inevitable birthday blues that comes every year which is bringing out the sadness and the poetry. But then he can’t really blame the girl. She is at that delicate age where love is something new, a poison in the guise of a sweet smelling red apple delicately offered to her on a silver platter. Yet, fortunately (for her own sake), she also possesses that rare brand of discernment to know that finding love in Hallyuland is like a kiss of death. Especially when you are young, talented, good-looking and on the brink of stardom.

Like her. And more importantly, like the object of her affection.

It is obvious she is falling deeper and deeper everyday. The phone calls never stop, the laughter never ceases, the smiles never leave her face and the words she writes barely describe what she truly feels in her heart.

Ah, young love. Manager Jun smiles despite his misgivings. He knows Shin Hye’s heart although her lips are constantly sealed. But he doesn’t know his.

There lies the difference.


I want to be loved, too.

Such honest, strong words from a delicate girl like you, Keun Suk muses silently while he reads her words.

He would be damned if he says he doesn’t know what she’s talking about. He can deny it to the press, to the fans, to his friends, even to his mother, but he can never deny it to himself what Shin Hye is trying to tell him through cyberspace, in front of everyone who is curious enough to visit her page and to every die-hard shipper worth his salt.

I want it, too.

It has been ages since Keun Suk felt it. He could barely remember when he last let the word ‘saranghae’ escapes his lips in front of a woman. That has been a void that started to quietly seep in to his consciousness in the last couple of years. But he merely ignored it, or more correctly, managed to ignore it because of his busy schedules. Work has been a substitute to it. It was even the reason why his last relationship came to an end, wasn’t it? He ended it because of work. He broke a heart because of work.

Now, someone else’s heart is singing a siren’s song to him again and his heart winces a bit.

It is not that his heart is singing a different tune. No.

It is just that he is scared he might break another heart again because of the same lame, pathetic excuse. Work.

Call him a coward if you will but he can never do that to a girl again. He promised that to himself the last time a beautiful face crumples in pain and disappointment before his very eyes.

His jaw clenches involuntarily at the thought.

You better be careful of what you wish for, kid. Keun Suk whispers sadly at the monitor. You just might get it along with a broken heart.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Conspiracy Theory

Conspiracy Theory

Hong Ki waves at Shin Hye as she makes her way to the gallery and smiles. “What’s with the long hair, Go Mi Nam?” He nudges Keun Suk towards her direction and both guys laugh. He waits for Keun Suk to deliver one of his usual witty one-liners towards Shin Hye but to his disappointment and surprise, he doesn’t breathe a word but just look at Shin Hye with a smile. Weird, Hong Ki thinks to himself and shrugs.

Shin Hye in return just also smiles warmly at Keun Suk and then directing her attention to Hong Ki, she exclaims above the noise of people settling in their seats to wait for the C.N. Blue showcase to begin, “Go Mi Nam’s hair went away for a vacation today. This is one of Lady Gaga’s rejects!” she points to her long wig.

She has arrived with her manager in tow but to Hong Ki’s surprise, instead of sitting himself with the other managers on the other side of the gallery, Shin Hye’s manager sits himself beside Keun Suk, walking ahead of his ward, while Shin Hye dutifully sits beside him. Hong Ki can’t help but look at Shin Hye inquisitively then watch Keun Suk’s reaction. But Shin Hye is oblivious to her friend’s stares as she busily scans the program on her hand. Keun Suk, on the other hand, is busily waving at fans who are trying to catch his attention.

Has he become the fifth A.N.JELL now, without my permission? Hong Ki asks himself in amusement as he watches the manager sits comfortably between Shin Hye and Keun Suk. He does know that they did not come here as the fictional A.N.JELL group so the three of them don’t really need to sit together but still, wouldn’t it be cool to sit closer with each other and chat with his two friends as they enjoy the music of Yong Hwa and his band? Why, he even ditched sitting together with his own bandmates, the FT Island, just so he could have some bonding time with Keun Suk and Shin Hye whom he doesn’t get to see as often as he wants to. But it seems Shin Hye’s manager is oblivious of anything today, huh?

He contemplates of asking Shin Hye to switch places with her manager but dismisses the idea right away. It will be too rude of him to do that. Can I ask Keun Suk-hyung to transfer beside Shin Hye, then? He asks then laughs at the absurdity of his thoughts. Why is he even going crazy over a seating arrangement? Pabo.

His musings are disrupted by the arrival of the actress who played the stylist in the drama. “Oh, noona, glad to see you here, too!” he greets as she settled herself beside Shin Hye.  Ah, now I don’t have to worry about Shin Hye sitting by herself, away from us, Hong Ki sighs in relief. Noona is here.

The showcase starts smoothly as expected. Hong Ki has been excited for Yong Hwa and his band, not only because they come from the same company, but also because he really digs their own brand of music. It is something new and electric, very promising. And it doesn’t hurt, too, that like the FT Island members, they are young and brimming with talent.

Throughout the show, however, there is another thing that catches the attention of Hong Ki away from the stage --- Keun Suk and Shin Hye. They have never said a word to each other in almost two hours! Hong Ki observes, looking at his watch, as the live performance of CN Blue nears its end and they prepare to leave. Something really weird is going on here, he mutters under his breath. But one thing he noticed was that throughout the show, Keun Suk keeps on glancing to his left, his eyes searching and his lips twitching into a little smile. It doesn’t take Hong Ki’s genius to find out who he was smiling at and whose eyes he was trying so hard to catch the entire time. Unless he got suddenly smitten by Shin Hye’s manager! He chuckles to himself, laughing at his own joke.

Seriously, are these two still playing their own little charade? He asks incredulously. How much more time do you need to make a move? He looks at Keun Suk’s way and sighs. Yong Hwa was right. Maybe they really need to book Keun Suk an appointment with the Soju Council the soonest possible time. The Soju Council of course comprises of him, Yong Hwa and as many bottles of soju they can gulp down to make Keun Suk talk.

“Shin Hye-shi, you know the place, right? We’ll see you there, okay? I’m going to ride with Keun Suk-hyung,” Hong Ki tells Shin Hye as they and the rest of the celebrity guests make their way out of the gallery. The performance of CN Blue has just been concluded and the Q&A with the press portion of the event has started. That is their cue to leave.

Shin Hye nods happily. “I have the feeling I will get there first ahead of you guys,” she jokes, motioning to the hordes of fans waiting for the guys to ask for their autographs.

When they planned to attend the CN Blue Showcase to support Yong Hwa and his band, they also planned to go out for dinner together after the program. It was Keun Suk who invited them out for dinner actually and he and Shin Hye both happily agreed, seeing it as a rare opportunity to catch up on each other and just bond, away from prying eyes, away from the cameras. Yong Hwa said he would catch up with them as soon as his band’s appearances for the day are all through.

They are dining out at a special seafood restaurant located at the outskirts of Seoul. Keun Suk has made the reservations days before and they are all looking forward to eat and relax the whole night.


“Hyung, are you and Shin Hye deliberately avoiding each other in public?” Hong Ki asks Keun Suk on their way to the restaurant. He is riding shotgun with Keun Suk whose face brightens to a wide smile at his question.

“Omo! You noticed it too? Has it been that obvious, then?” Keun Suk asks jokingly, his eyes on the road.

Hong Ki laughs. “After being a witness to all those closeness and shameless flirting on set, you make it appear like Shin Hye suddenly became a nun or something! You look like you won’t even touch her with a ten-foot pole!”

Keun Suk runs his fingers through his hair. “Just one of the things we have to do as a celebrity, you know,” he looks at Hong Ki meaningfully.

Hong Ki nods, understanding his predicament. As a celebrity himself, he knows the importance of shielding your personal life away from the eyes of the public -- a public that does not always have the understanding or the proper discernment to acknowledge that they are human beings too, capable of loving, making mistakes and susceptible of being hurt.

“So you and Shin Hye really talked this over, then?” Hong Ki asks. He knows how Shin Hye got attached not only with Keun Suk, but to him and Yong Hwa, so easily and that it would really hurt her if Keun Suk just started ignoring her in public without telling her first. The girl could really sometimes be a tomboy who looks like she can take everything you throw at her but Hong Ki knows that she is still a girl with a vulnerable heart. Especially when it comes to this hyung, he smiles inwardly.

Keun Suk nods. “Yeah, we have talked about this. And her management and mine also agreed that it would be best for now to just lay low for awhile. Let all those rumors about us die down a little bit. It just sucks, though. I’m not used to ignoring her like this in public. Feels awkward,” he admits.

Hong Ki smiles in agreement. “But hyung, does her manager really have to wedge himself between the two of you today?” He asks Keun Suk, his face serious and his mouth curling in a pout.

Keun Suk bursts out in a loud laugh. “That was his idea, not mine! Yeah, if you think about it, you could have just sat between Shin Hye and me, right?” He lets out a loud yell. “Aaaarggh! This whole thing is making idiots out of all of us!”

But Hong Ki is really curious about one thing. “Hyung, how come you two are going this great length to avoid any scandal? Are you two even dating?” Of course he knows the answer to his question but Hong Ki just wants to drive home the point. It really does look absurd to avoid each other like that in public just to avoid a scandal, right? If there is no truth to it, then just say so. No need to feel guilty about it or to avoid any public display of affection because of it. Just tell the truth and the intrigues will die down naturally.

Keun Suk’s voice booms at him. “Ya, Hong Ki! Since when did you become a nosy reporter?” His eyes are full of laughter but he wears a blank expression on his face. “We’re here,” he says, changing the subject as he pulls down to a stop in front of the restaurant.

Gotcha! Hong Ki mutters under his breath triumphantly as he unbuckles his seatbelt.


Hong Ki has witnessed first hand the attraction that has been brewing between his co-stars since the drama started. He is a guy, too and he knows how guys like himself treat girls they are interested in. And as far as he knows, Keun Suk has been treating Shin Hye really special since the start of the drama that both he and Yong Hwa noticed it right away. Guys are territorial by nature. Like the proverbial hunter, they want to mark their prey early on, to prevent others to take it away from them. Keun Suk has been doing this to Shin Hye, unconsciously or not. As far as Hong Ki is concerned, Keun Suk has been claiming his stake on Shin Hye subconsciously, by getting close to her, teasing and flirting with her on set, stealing her heart away without the both of them being aware of it.

Once when they were filming late at night and he and Yong Hwa were taking a quick nap, they had been awakened by Keun Suk and Shin Hye’s laughter as they huddled together in a corner, talking and joking, oblivious to their surroundings. They seemed to have built a world of their own that Yong Hwa and him could only exchange knowing looks and shrugs as they watched their co-stars carried on their bantering at the wee hours of the night, full of energy and laughter.

That was how he and Yong Hwa started to imitate them, staging their own little parodies to exaggerate the closeness they have been witnessing on Keun Suk and Shin Hye. Sometimes, he would call on Keun Suk just to say “Saranghe, Keun Suk-hyung!” whenever Shin Hye was within earshot, indirectly eliciting her jealousy and tapping her inner feelings to get through the surface. But Shin Hye, oblivious to his evil motives, would only join in the laughter much to his chagrin.

Yong Hwa on his part would always make it a point to disrupt the two whenever he would see them getting cozy together, just to irk Keun Suk. Popping up unceremoniously behind them whenever they were huddled together, Yong Hwa would barge himself in, interrupting their moment. The two didn’t seem to mind or notice however but it would always crack Hong Ki and Yong Hwa to see their friends try so hard to cover up their growing attraction for each other and pass it as just what normal friends feel towards one another.

But Hong Ki knew that sooner or later, when the drama would be over, when the guise of being co-actors on set has worn off, they would be forced to evaluate everything out on their own.

And seeing the awkwardness these two had been putting themselves up since the night of the drama awards, Hong Ki knows that it won’t be long until they are force to admit to themselves what is really going on between them.

But it sure is fun to keep the fans and even your friends guessing, huh? Hong Ki tells himself as he sees Shin Hye’s face lit up at the sight of Keun Suk and him entering the restaurant.

What do you have in store for us tonight, you two? He asks his friends silently as he playfully grabs Shin Hye’s wig, earning a playful jab from her.

Friday, January 15, 2010

My Beautiful Disaster (Part III)

My Beautiful Disaster

Shin Hye's Story

Date Jang Geun Suk? Did I want to date him? 

If I were a fangirl, I would say “Hell, yeah!” in a heartbeat. I mean, who wouldn’t, right? No sane girl in all of Korea would probably pass up the chance to date him. You can just ask his legion of fans to enumerate for you the top 100 reasons why you should want to date him. I would not even dare to question anything on that list. He is such an eye candy that you wouldn’t miss the chance to claim as your own.

But I'm not just a fan. He's my friend. A friend I shared this uncommon, weird, out-of-this world connection with. Or like others say -- chemistry. A chemistry that looks good on screen because it feels real off-cam.

I am no hypocrite. I feel it. I feel the chemistry -- that certain spark, between us. And it feels good. We have really been enjoying each other's company during the time we filmed the drama. He was forever teasing me, forever flirting with me. And I enjoyed all the attention he was giving me. He was really a charmer and I was not immune to it, I guess. A lot of that had been captured on cam. A lot of my enchantment, those seemingly spellbound moments I had with him was witnessed by the fans, thanks to those BTS videos uploaded online.

I could deny it, and say, “Hey look, I also share the same friendship and rapport with Hong Ki and Yong Hwa!”  Those two have also become my cherished friends, thanks to the drama. The bond I share with them is just the same with the one I have with Keun Suk-oppa.

But did their touch ever send goosebumps on my skin? Did their mere presence make me forget I was just acting the part of Go Mi Nam and not Shin Hye? Did their intent gazes awaken the sleeping butterflies in my stomach? Did they ever make me feel jealous about anything?

I will forever adore Hong Ki, even when we are both old and have grey hair. He is like a cherished playmate I met in the park. We shared so much laughter and dorky antics together that I already lost track counting them in my memory. He is like a cup of hot chocolate on a cold, winter morning. The sunshine on a cloudy day… He is that to me. But the electrifying feeling Go Mi Nam felt for Hwang Tae Kyung? It is not there. And I am so glad it doesn't exist because that means Hong Ki and I will always be the unadulterated dorky friends that we already are.

Yong Hwa is the smooth charmer everybody loves, me included. He is quiet and shy in front of the camera but off-cam, he rivals Hong Ki with his quirky sense of humor. We became close because he was just so easy to hang out with. I know some fans thought he and I can be a good match because in interviews, he always chooses me over other girls as his ideal type. But of course he would choose me. I'm the first actress he ever worked with. He's just being loyal and being very patronizing. But wait ‘til he has the chance to work with other prettier girls, then I would probably be on the bottom of his list.

Would I date Hong Ki and Yong Hwa? But of course! Anytime. My dream date with them would be to treat them to a round of soju after a nice dinner and sing our hearts out at a noraebang ‘til we drop. Let’s just see if those two idols can beat me at karaoke singing!

Do I want to date Keun Suk-oppa?

Does he want to date me?

I don't think he does. Because from what I've been hearing so far, I don't even fit his ideal type.


If I am nowhere near his type of girl he wants to date, then at least, his mom likes me. That means 100 points for me, right?

The first time I heard about it I thought he was just making it up. He just mentioned it once, in passing, that his mom was a fan. I just smiled then, thinking he was just acting polite, probably pulling my leg. But when he mentioned it again on TV, I came to believe him eventually. After all, I do know that if there is one thing he hates to do, it is to lie before the cameras.

His mom likes me? Enough to consult a fortune teller to ask if I would be a good match to her son? That part Keun Suk-oppa never told me and I was floored when I heard that. I was the butt of jokes at home for a few days because of that. It even got my mom thinking if she ought to consult a fortune teller too, just to confirm it for herself.

"Omma!" I cried out in embarrassment when she suggested that. Even my dad found the idea amusing. "Now that someone's mother likes you enough to consider you for her son, we won't have to worry finding you a good match later on, do we?" my dad joked.

Yes, his Omma might really like me. But...does he?


He is naturally playful so I did not really give any color to his incessant teasing and flirting. And being the only girl among them, it was just natural that they would pick on me most of the time, right? Even Hong Ki and Yong Hwa teased and joked with me a lot I already got immune to them.

But Hong Ki or Yong Hwa did not dare flirt with me.

This is hard because I do not really know how to tell if a guy is seeing me as more than just a friend. My faculties are not so good when it comes to that. I guess you can say I am a first-class dimwit in that aspect. Plus, will I really be that presumptuous to think that Keun Suk-oppa sort of likes me? Am I even allowed to think that?

I don’t like assuming things. I don’t jump into conclusions that fast. I need proofs to support that ridiculous thought.

Okay, yes he flirted with me a lot. But flirting is as natural as breathing to him.

We have great chemistry. But sharing chemistry with a person doesn’t mean you already like that person, does it?

He always gave me lots of attention on set. Well, we did work together so it’s just normal that we paid attention to each other.

He once asked me out to dinner…alone. Did that mean anything? Yeah, now that I remember it, didn’t he say on TV that we hit off really well during that night out?  I guess friends treat each other out to dinner all the time, right?

His mom likes me. Now, if only that can be a gauge to know his real feelings.

Aaarggh! If only I could ask my friends to figure things out with me. But of course, I can’t. What to do? What to do?

Or…maybe I’m just the only one imagining that we kind of have that spark, that magic, that bond, huh? I really could be naïve about this kind of things.

Ah, Shin Hye. Get over yourself. He is way over your league. And didn’t they say that he likes noonas?


“Do you think he likes me?” I ask my best friend, Mi Young. We are in my room, talking in whispers like crazy idiots, afraid my brother from the other room could hear anything.

After much deliberation, I eventually mustered the courage to summon her for her expertise on dating and confessed my growing confusion about him to her. But not after I swore her in to secrecy. “If you dare breathe anything about this to anyone, and I mean anyone, I swear I will hunt you down and exact retribution. Are we clear on that?” I told her sternly.

She sticks her tongue out to me. “Don’t get too melodramatic. The whole world already knows that you like each other. You’re hopping in to the bandwagon a little too late!” she dismisses me with a sneer.

It is the first week of the new year and we are huddled on my bed, figuring him out like crazy while snow falls incessantly outside. What a nice way to spend a snowy day --- talking about him freely with someone I trust. It is liberating, for a change.

“But let me just set one thing straight. Before we go in deeper into this matter, can I ask you one favour, Shin Hye?” she asks.


“Can you at least say out loud, even just this once, that you like him. Blurt it out! Come on,” she tells me in mock indignation.

My eyes widen in apprehension. I shake my head. I can’t.

She laughs hysterically that I have to shut her up. “Oh, I can’t believe this. Here we are, about to dissect a guy’s psyche out, piece by piece, and you can’t even admit to yourself the reason why we are so concerned about what’s going in his head,” she shakes in uncontrollable laughter. “Seriously, Miss Park, I think you’re having it so bad. I don’t know what to say.”

“I’m not even sure I like him that way.”

She looks at me incredulously. “Then why are we wasting time to figure out if he likes you or not? Oh, seriously. I’m out of here,” she stands up, grabbing her phone on the table. “Just call me when you made up my mind, little miss clueless.”

I grab at her hand. “Mi Young! I’m serious. Help me. I can’t talk about this to anyone. Only with you,” I plead.

“I like him.” She mouths the words slowly. “Just spit it out. I. Like. Him.” She glares at me.

I nod, eager to make her stay. “Okay, okay. I do. I like him. There, satisfied?” I ask her, a part of me wanting to strangle her. She is really enjoying herself this time, tormenting me. But she is right. The words are surprisingly good to hear. I like him. It feels good to say it out loud.

She smiles triumphantly. “There. You’re officially the 67850th girl who declared her admiration to Jang Geun Suk. It’s not that big a deal, right?” She asks with a smirk.

I hit her with a pillow. “I know. I’m just one of the statistics, right?” I ask sadly. “So what are the chances that he will like me back?”

She looks at me, studying my face. “What’s your gut-feel about this? I mean, don’t think it over, don’t over analyze. Just answer right away. Do you think he likes you?”

I sigh. “Yes.” My heart gives the answer.

She shrieks in excitement. “I think so too. I mean, after seeing all those photos and videos of you together? He’s got to feel something for you to be able to flirt that way. Even my bf thinks you’re already dating him!”

“You think so?” Her words make my little heart flutter with hope.

She nods. “He is still a guy, for God’s sake! He must feel something. You don’t flirt that way every chance you get if you don’t feeling anything. You can only do so much fan-service, silly. What you too were doing in those BTS was too much for a fan-service, if you ask me.”

I shriek in embarrassment as she parodied him licking my finger. “Stop it!”

We both laugh hysterically. I would really do anything to erase that video footage from internet memory.

Then, she asks me, suddenly remembering something. “And didn’t you say that he was worried about having a scandal with you?”


“Well, that could be a sign that he is concerned about you. If he doesn’t care, he just can ignore and let the rumors about the both of you die down, right? But he is trying to stop it. After talking about you a lot, he just suddenly wanted to quell it. That’s kind of weird…unless he’s really starting to feel something for you.”

I look at her, perplexed. “What do you mean?”

“You know how sometimes it’s so easy to talk about things that don’t really mean anything to you? Like discussing someone else’s sad story to another, for example,” she explains. “But when that story becomes yours, suddenly you want to protect it, to hide it, to have others stop talking about it. I guess that’s one way to explain his behaviour. Suddenly, all those rumors are slowly becoming his own truth. And he wants to protect that badly.”

I stare at her for seconds, pondering her theory. Is she correct?


Days before the drama awards, Keun Suk-oppa had talked to me about the increasing hype we seemed to have generated from the fans. This was after I got back from my trip to Nepal and found all sort of talks about us online. Netizens were speculating about us being a real couple. They even voted us the on-screen couple they wanted to see date for real. Then there was the story about his omma and the fortune teller which further fanned the fire. We were all over the news and I was growing a little worried about all those rumors, afraid about the implication of these to both our managements.

Apparently, we were both worrying about the same thing. “First, I really want to apologize talking about how my Omma likes you on TV,” he began, calling me up one night.

I laughed at his remark. “Oppa, what is there to apologize for? I am the one thankful to your Omma for liking me. Please send her my best regards. I hope I can pay her a visit one of these days.” 

He laughed back. “Yes, do that soon. It would really make her day to meet you personally.”

I blushed at his suggestion, thankful we were not speaking face to face.

“I’m also sorry if the trip to the fortune teller story my Omma did made you uncomfortable,” he continued. “But she really did that so brace yourself for another surge of marriage rumors real soon,” he joked on the other line.

Again, my heart skipped a beat to hear him confirmed that story. “She did?” I asked, my voice a little too happy. “That was cute, Oppa.”

“Yeah. And we are a good match, would you believe that?” He chuckled, then he continued a little seriously, “But I guess I have been talking about you so much lately that I am to be blamed for all the rumors circulating around. Mianhe, Shin Hye.

“Oppa, it’s okay,” I told him, trying to quell his guilt. “Rumors will always be there. That’s already part of the package. Don’t worry yourself too much about it.”

I heard him heaved a sigh on the other line. “Thanks, Shin Hye. But I still think I owe it to you stop the rumors from escalating into a full-blown scandal. I mean, I won’t care if it was just me. But it involves you too and I don’t want to make things difficult for you or your management.”

“So what do we do then, Oppa?”

He waited for a second before he answered. “I’ll refrain from getting to close to you in public from now on. I won’t give them enough bait to start with. So if you don’t see my face sticking close to you like it used to, don’t fret, okay? I’m just shielding you from the rumors.”

My heart felt dejected and startled by his news. “Ahrasso, Oppa. But we are still friends, right?”

He gave out a loud laugh. “Ya! Of course we are! I just want to downplay the rumors about us. I didn’t say I will stop pestering you in real life.”

My heart swelled in relief. “I guess I have to stick by Hong Ki’s side more often then,” I said. “We both are scandal-proof together.”

“Yeah, do that. Just stick with Hong Ki. Yong Hwa and I are too dangerous to be with you in public,” he warned mockingly.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

My Beautiful Disaster (Part II)

My Beautiful Disaster

Shin Hye's Story

I have always been a private person. Something which is very hard to reconcile considering that I live in the limelight. But I have decided early on, even before I started in the entertainment industry, that I would try my best to separate my private and public lives.

I come from a normal family and I love doing everyday things with them. I know I am a public figure but there are things which I prefer to just keep for myself and the people close to me only. I lead a boring life outside the limelight anyway. If I were to broadcast my daily life in a reality show, I bet no one would even dare watch it because my life off-cam is just dull. I live practically just like any other Korean girl living in Seoul. My closest friends are those I have known since childhood. I only have few celebrity friends. I do not go to bars or clubs. During my free time, you can catch me camping out in my room, pouring my thoughts out in paper, watching DVDs, playing with our dog, learning foreign languages or pestering my brother to give me free guitar lessons which always ends up with me ordering a box of pizza just to bribe him.

My life is very normal, compared to other celebrities. I have always been a homebody. And I love it. My private life keeps me sane away from the chaos of showbiz. Don’t get me wrong, I love what I do. I love acting, singing and dancing. I love to entertain and I aspire to be known as one of Korea’s serious actresses someday. I take my craft seriously. It’s something I have decided to pursue early on. I have always wanted to act, to perform, to dance.

But I am a little uncomfortable with the hype that goes with being a celebrity. Sure, I enjoy the glamour, the beautiful dresses, the gorgeous make-ups, the lovely photo shoots and the thrill of walking on red carpets. I am a girl, after all. But at the end of the day, what I really crave for is just the peace and quiet of home. The normalcy of every day life, of being Shin Hye, a girl who is trying to figure how to be an adult in a world where every thing she does is magnified, blow out of proportion and every thing that comes out of her mouth is dissected, interpreted and analyzed.

I am just a girl with big dreams, too. I also make mistakes and have bad habits that are hard to break. I feel insecure, too, every now and then, and sometimes, I also throw tantrums when I’m in a bad mood. All these things I know I cannot do when I’m in the limelight. That’s why I value my life off-cam a lot more. Because behind the cameras, I can be the imperfect me.


I always envy celebrities who are comfortable living under the glares of the limelight. Like Keun Suk-oppa. He knows how to handle his fame and his status as a celebrity. The Jang Geun Suk everybody sees on TV is the same Keun Suk off-cam. He was really born to be in the limelight. He attracts attention and he doesn’t cower from it. He is the type who would go to downtown Seoul and blend in with the crowd without a disguise. He is that comfortable with his status.

“Why hide behind dark sunglasses when you worked so hard to get famous in the first place? We owe it to the public to at least acknowledge them when they see us. And we owe it to ourselves to live our lives like everyone else does. Just do your own thing, Shin Hye. It’s your life, anyway,” he gave me this advice once when we were talking about how to lead normal lives despite being celebrities. It was one of those talks we shared on set, filming the drama.

Yes, he waxes philosophical thoughts sometimes, intersperse with his usual clowning and teasing, of course. And it was a facet of him I like most because it reflects what he really is, deep inside. It would take a lot of time to discover that side of him, though. You have to dig deeper to find it, because often times, all he shows is just the funny, outgoing, friendly, adorable Keun Suk that everyone loves.

I adore that, too, of course. Who can resist that smile, that laugh, and that charm? But what makes me appreciate him more was the side of him he tucks in behind those sunny smiles and toothy grins. The Keun Suk I have discovered by myself, by quietly observing him and his actions. The Keun Suk not often caught by the cameras. The Keun Suk you can only see when you know him up close and personal.


My non-showbiz friends have been asking me if Keun Suk-oppa and I are already dating. They said photos and videos of our BTS are all over the internet and those clips just show how intimate and close we are.

“I know you are naturally sweet, Shin Hye. But come on, did he have to lick that icing off your finger? You haven’t even fed me with your own hand and we’ve been friends since pre-school,” my best friend told me over coffee, trying to let me spill my guts to her about the real score between me and Keun Suk.

I blushed at the mention of the video. I was not even aware that was caught on-cam. I guess some enterprising soul had his cam ready that moment and shared the file. When I saw it uploaded on the internet, I literally hid between my sheet covers and just stayed there for like an hour. I was that embarrassed. When he did that, of course it was just nothing. I was just trying to pull a prank on him by trying to smear icing on his face but he caught my hand mid-air so I just let him lick the icing off, pretending that it was my original intention to let him eat it. Arrrggh. I guess karma caught up with me big time. For all the world to see.

But that was sweet, right? Replaying the video for the thousandth time, it still leaves goosebumps on me every time I watch it. I will not lie. That act was really intimate and smells a little fishy if you see it. I just pray that Appa won’t get wind of the videos ever. Or Oppa. But that would be aiming for the moon.

 “We were just fooling around,” I managed to say, dodging the obvious question. It was the truth, anyway.

“Fooling around, my foot!” my best friend hissed, eyes glaring at me. “Just when did you learn how to ‘fool around’ with guys, huh? And with Jang Geun Suk!? He sure knows how to push your buttons, by the way.”

“Hey, that was just scripted. It was part of the promotions for the drama. Don’t get so excited about it. It’s nothing,” I said dismissively, trying another tactic to shut her up.

She looked at me, unconvinced. “I know it when you are telling the truth and when you are just making things up, you silly girl. And right now, I know you are just faking it.” She sized me up, waiting for me to change my mind and spill my guts. But I did not budge.

“Come on, I can be trusted. My lips are tight! So what if you two are dating? What’s the big deal? Your actions speak for the obvious, anyway,” she said, exasperated.

I shook my head. “We are just friends. Really.”


I laughed. “Would I lie about something like this to you? You’re my best friend. You will be the first to know if I have Jang Geun Suk as my boyfriend. But he’s not.”

She kept quiet for a second. “But you want to date him, right?” She asked, watching my reaction.

I looked at her, surprised by her question. Do I want to date him? My mind asked a couple of times before her laughter snapped me out from my thoughts. 

“I got it, Shin Hye. Your 5-second is up. Correct answer.” She smiled knowingly.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My Beautiful Disaster (Part I)

My Beautiful Disaster

Shin Hye’s Story

When I was little, Appa called me yo shin. Good night, my little goddess, he would say, every time he would tuck me in to bed. He was a man of few words, still is, but with those words whispered every night to me before I went to sleep, he always made me feel special. Always loved, always appreciated.

I grew up knowing that no matter what I do, where I am, what I would be, two guys will always love me from head to toe, unconditionally – my dad and my older brother. Appa and Oppa. They may always not be articulate in expressing their feelings for me but their protection and care is always there. They are always on standby, like a first-aid kit, like an ambulance, to go running after me when they see me fall or hurt.

Oh, they do not love me to perfection. Appa does not always sing high praises for me. He merely grunts his acknowledgment whenever Omma says I have bagged another CF or landed in another role. He does not even seem to be aware that I am already earning my own money. He still gives me allowances; still sends me to school with his own money. In his eyes, I will always be his responsibility until I’m finished with university. I am not Shin Hye, the actress who stars in dramas and CFs. I am just Shin Hye, the little girl he still calls yo shin whenever he sees me all dressed up.

My brother does not even watch my dramas. He says he feels uncomfortable seeing my pictures in magazines because in his mind, I would always be the dorky face little sister lounging around at home in her PJs. Or at least, that’s what he claims. Until he starts criticizing on how stiff I look in a magazine cover or how awkward I moved my face in a kissing scene. My number one critic – that’s my brother. But I know that he is also my number one fan.

These two guys taught me all the things I thought I should know about men in general. Because of them, I am comfortable around the male species. I know how to deal with them, how to humor them, and how to understand them. I always hear remarks how I easily get comfortable with my fellow actors, young and old, and how surprised people are to see a shy, quiet girl like me totally at ease around guys of all kinds and sizes. What people don’t know is that I have lived with guys all my life --- and they have trained me well.

When I turned 20, my dad told me something he said I should never forget. It was the night of my birthday and we were talking, just the two of us, in our little garden. We were sitting in the swing he made for my brother and I years back when Oppa could still fit his frame in it. 

“You just become an adult today and as much as I want to always have you by my side, I know sooner or later, someone will take you away from your Omma and me,” he began. Appa loves to give talks like this on our birthdays. And it is something I always look forward to whenever my birthday comes along.

But I couldn’t help but laughed at the direction he was getting at. Someone to take me away? “Appa, you sound like you already found a good match for me,” I giggled. He was talking to me as an adult for the first time but I just couldn’t believe he would be choosing that as a topic. I have only read about scenes like this in drama scripts!

“Just listen up, you little rascal. You’re my only daughter. This is for your own good,” he told me sternly. I could see he was serious, although a little uncomfortable with it.  I stopped giggling, chastened by his voice. Appa is not one to waste his words over things that do not matter to him. And I knew what he was about to tell me that evening was something he felt he should do as a father. So I listened up, waiting for him to speak.

“Sooner or later, you will meet someone and fall in love. Whoever he will be, I hope you will choose well and wisely. He will be different from your brother and me, Shin Hye. He will come from a different family, a different background. The things you learn from us will be useful but they will not always help you to understand him. He will love you. But sometimes he won’t. He will break your heart and I would want to save you from the pain, but we -- your brother, Omma and I -- will not interfere. You will fall on your knees once, twice… as many times as you want. We will be there to raise you up each time you fall, but we will not be there to prevent it. Only you can do that,” he said, his quiet voice warming my heart from the chilly night air.

I knew he was talking about letting me go. Out in the wild, crazy world of adulthood. And I felt scared all of a sudden. Scared to meet the guy my dad was talking about. Scared to find a love which will break me, like he just said.

“I won’t fall in love that way, Appa,” I told him quietly.

My father laughed. “Everyone falls in love that way, Shin Hye, at least once. You just have to tell that heart of yours to choose wisely. You don’t have to choose the best in our eyes, but in yours. You will laugh with him and shed tears for him. At least, make him worthwhile.”

“And have a brave heart, yo shin. You will need it, trust me.”  


I call him a beautiful disaster. My own beautiful disaster.  A walking contradiction that never ceases to amaze me. A boy trapped in a man’s body, good looks and that voice. He is forever playful, forever friendly, forever tantalizing everyone with his beautiful smile. He is beautiful and he knows it. He loves to shine and he is shining brightly each day. He is dripping with confidence, talent and passion. Attributes which will inevitably make him the one to beat in the world of Hallyu.

But beneath that shining, aggressive, go-getter exterior is really just a simple boy with a lot of dreams. No, he didn’t tell me that. That’s just the way I read him. And I have been reading him for quite a while now.

I have to admit, my first impression of him was quite superficial – just another pretty flower boy who thinks he is God’s gift to women. You couldn’t blame me, he surely looked the part and if you follow him on the papers and gossip columns, he played the part, too.

Since I debuted, I have been lucky enough to be paired up with the so-called heartthrobs in the industry. They are the guys the ahjummas and noonas/unnies would fight tooth and nail for. My brother even foolishly warned me before to always watch my back whenever I was out in the street. “You might just find your head already rolling ahead of you a little too late. Fangirls of those flower boys are scaaarryy!” he warned.

But I was not afraid. After all, who was I to think I would get these beautiful guys to notice me and be a threat to their legion of fans? Working with them was fun but it was just a job. Nothing personal. Yes, they looked like gods but they were also just people, like everyone else. They were my oppas, nothing more. And I’m sure they felt the same way. Besides, I was too young for them. Surely, who would take a young girl like me seriously? Seriously enough to date or whatever. It is not like I am Soo Ae unnie or Yoon Eun Hye unnie. Those pretty faces are the stuff guys’ dreams are made of. But me? Like my brother says, I look too dorky to date.

And it’s not like I would die if I don’t date real soon. I won’t. And honestly, if and when I really date, I think I would be dating someone normal. Normal meaning a non-celebrity guy. Maybe someone from church or someone from school. I think I would be more comfortable dating those kinds of guys. At least, with them, I won’t be competing with a throng of fans or a troop of beautiful girls for their attention. For normal guys, like my father or my brother, I would always have a chance to be someone else’s yo shin. And falling in love would be at least, with my father’s warning in mind, a little less complicated.

Or so I thought. But God loves to make pranks to unsuspecting girls like me.


He was not my first on-screen kiss but he surely did make it the most memorable one to date. And let me remind you that on-screen kisses are the only kisses I have had so far in my life so I couldn’t even categorize his kiss as the most memorable on-screen kiss I have had. It was the most memorable kiss I’ve had in my life, period.

It was memorable not because of the obvious reason which is he was Jang Geun Suk, darn it! No, that was not my reason at all. It was because the kiss was the most comfortable kiss I did so far, thanks to him. He was a total gentleman and this is not to say the other actors I shared kisses with before were not. But with the kind of kiss we shared in the CF, I never felt awkward towards him after. It was like kissing someone you have known for a long time. That kind of feeling. It was a deep, intimate kiss. The kind of kiss which would certainly make me blushed if I had it for real. But surprisingly, it didn’t feel awkward to do it with him at all. We had fun doing it. He made it a lot less awkward for me. Thanks to his non-stop talking.

He talks a lot. He loves talking and it is good that I am the type who loves to listen so I just let him do the talking when we were shooting that scene. His jokes and his witty prattle took my mind away from the scene and let me be comfortable with him. I guess that was when I actually started reading him. He talked a lot but he didn’t talk nonsense. His talkative nature, I found out soon enough, was there for a purpose. He talked because he wanted to know more, to befriend me, to make us comfortable with each other. He told me jokes because he wanted to break the ice, to set a friendlier mood. And I appreciated that.

He loved to tease and laugh at himself. He loved to ask questions, poking his nose around the set during breaks, asking the cameraman how to set up this and that, even observing how the make-up artist mix-and-match make-up colors on my face. He was a curious little kid and the big world was his playground, I thought of him then.

A flower boy with a substance. Definitely a beautiful kind of disaster I did not know I had been waiting for to meet.