Celebrity Sightings: Softy’s edition, part 2

Why is Kim Soo Hyun’s photo used as the main image for this post, you ask? Because I figured we would want to send as much good energy as possible to Softy so that she could meet him one day, hopefully sooner than later. And while we’re at it, maybe Kim Jae Won, Song Joong Ki, and Yoon Kye Sang, too!

Part 2 will continue Softy’s celebrity sightings stories from Part 1, but whereas the first part focused on celebrities she randomly ran into in the streets and shopping malls, Part 2 will be on celebrities she randomly or purposely ran into in their natural working environments, including fan signing events, filming locations, and umm, a hair salon. I think we all agree that we just need to follow Softy around when in Seoul. (- Blue)

***************

I was driving past Kyobo in Gangnam and saw a line of people waiting for something. I thought it was odd cause a large group of women were gathered outside the Trugen store. That line was for people who bought over $100 worth of Trugen clothing and products to get Lee Min Ho’s autograph. The funny thing was that line was pretty short, but the crowd outside the store was gathering by the seconds.

I got there before the crowd got out of control, so I had a great view of his face as he signed and greeted his fans. People say his face is dark but on that day he wasn’t – his skin looked perfect. Either he had on really great makeup or people saw him tanned after a vacation. He is one of those guys who looks way better in person than on TV. When he came out of the store with his bodyguards, he hopped into his Escalade and I wrote down his license plate number just in case I saw the car again and then I will know it’s his. That totally makes me sound like a future stalker and it certainly doesn’t help that I know that recently he bought a home in the same complex as Hyun Bin and Jang Dong Gun’s family. I pass by it every time I go to my cousin’s place. It’s not the prettiest building, but it has a decent view. I still can’t believe three top stars all live there. It’s so remote from anywhere really nice, like Apgujeong, so I don’t understand what the big attraction was to choose that location.

I already wrote about this on my blog, but I met Yoo Ah In for 2 hours at some random event. It was basically him being interviewed by some reporter, and almost every part of the conversation went over my head. I was just happy to get to stare at him, so I didn’t try too hard to comprehend everything that was said.

The event was held in a movie theater and it was packed. I sat right across from him 5th row so I could see his face pretty clearly. The whole thing lasted 2 hours, and towards the last half, they took questions from the audience. I didn’t raise my hand cause for the life of me, I had nothing to ask. Poor guy was so tired, but he was a trooper and signed autographs and took pics with 3 fans that were randomly selected by him at the end.

In real life, he is just like any other celebrity except he doesn’t guard his words that much. He spontaneously laughs a lot, shakes his right hand like he has a nervous tic, and tugs on his right earlobe so much that the reporter said it would fall off so he finally stopped. He is just as good looking in person as Lee Min Ho, but Yoo Ah In didn’t dress up. He just wore a casual black tee with a white vest over it (which he later removed cause the place was warm) with weird “Aladdin” black pants. He is not as skinny as I pictured him, and his face wasn’t gaunt like it was when Sungkyunkwan Scandal first ended.

I just keep remembering how he made the oddest facial expressions and yelled out (to vent his frustration maybe or to wake himself up?) a few times cause he looked incredibly bored out of his mind. At one point an eyelash got into his contact so he kept winking and making some hilarious faces.

(Yoo Ah In’s signature smile and pose)

I think I memorized and drank in every feature and those two hours just flew by. I feel like I know him better now and thank goodness I like him even more. I could write volumes about that night, but it would all be about how adorable he is in real life. When a lucky few got to take pics with him and get his autograph, I noticed he has a certain “pose and smile” for when he takes pictures. Now when I see that pose, I feel like I know a secret about him.

When Street Kings premiered in Korea, Keanu Reeves came for it and I made it my mission to see him in person. I went early to stake out a spot near the red carpet, but I chose poorly. I didn’t go near the rope lines and waited on top of some steps for a better vantage point. If I had stayed at my first spot, I would have gotten to shake his hands. I had a crush on him for so long that I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t in love with him. Through all his crappy movies and his hits, I was a loyal fan.

Seeing him in person made me a little sad. He got a lot older than I expected, but he still looks great. He was so polite telling the crowd how much he enjoyed eating Korean barbecue and how much he loved visiting Seoul. His voice in real life sounds just as dreamy as in the movies.

Wentworth Miller was the spokes model for Bean Pole for a while, so he came for a promotion and to do a fan meeting. It was held at the Shilla Hotel and I had a lunch appointment there with a cousin of mine. I made it for 11 A.M. cause I knew that was when his fan meeting would be wrapping up. I waited around with some of his die-hard Korean fans and they were ready with cameras and everything. All I had was my cell phone. He came out after his meeting and was told that the fans who couldn’t get into his fan meeting were waiting downstairs and to say hi to us for a minute. He addressed the crowd and told us to be quiet cause so many women were screaming and he didn’t want us to get in trouble. He stood and posed for photos for a few people. I never saw anyone so good looking in real life before. The man is way more stunning in person than on paper.

Getting to see Son Ye Jin was both accidental and uneventful for both of us. I was running late for an appointment and she was filming in the subway station for that drama where she plays a reporter (Spotlight). A crowd of onlookers were blocking my way and I couldn’t go around it, so I was pretty pissed cause that meant I had to wait around till they yell “cut” and I didn’t have time for that. So I spoke in English that I was in a hurry and ignored the crew and kept walking. Thanks to me, she might have had to do a new take so I am pretty sure she didn’t appreciate “running” into me as well.

I normally don’t track down a filming site unless the instinct is very strong and I felt that for only two dramas – Coffee Prince and My Girlfriend is a Gumiho. I can’t say I saw Lee Seung Gi and Shin Min Ah since they were so far away, but I tracked down the action school and watched them film from outside at a distance. They were filming on the rooftop so you can’t really hear anything but laughter once in a while. Lee Seung Gi laughs a lot, like he is nervous cause Shin Min Ah is so pretty. He kept being courteous to her between takes.

This is one of the most beautiful places to go cause the view is amazing from up there, but I couldn’t stick around cause there are tons of trees and mosquitoes were buzzing everywhere. Even though I loved this drama and wanted to watch more, I didn’t even last 15 minutes. No star is worth getting eaten alive by mosquitoes in my book.

I went to the same hair salon as Gong Yoo, Yoon Eun Hye, and the rest of the cast of Coffee Prince so I knew from my stylist that they had their hair and makeup done before the shop opened and left straight for their drama shoots. She gave me a tip and made me an appointment where I could run into them as they were leaving as long as I came in earlier than my usual time, which was 10:30am. She is really sweet and knew I had a crush on Gong Yoo so she would talk about him as she did my hair. I never ever thought of talking to the cast cause for some reason none of the clients ever approach a celebrity – it’s like a silent pact to leave them alone and give them space and just look from afar. I certainly didn’t want to break any rules since I love my salon and didn’t want to embarrass my stylist. So I saw them twice at the salon and once when I watched them film from outside the coffee shop in Hongdae.

I saw Gong Yoo get into his van right in front of me, like an arm’s length away. The thing about watching actors shoot inside the coffee shop is that we are outside and can’t hear anything, so it’s boring and our legs hurt. Since there weren’t as many mosquitoes then, I managed to hang in there for 30 minutes or so till my legs hurt, and I felt stupid just hanging around for a glimpse of the scene they were shooting.

What I will always remember with a little bit of fondness mixed in with some twinge of sadness is that I saw Lee Eon in one of those celebrity vans driving away from my salon as I was heading in. Most actors close the windows but he had his open and stuck his head out and waved at people when they recognized him. He sort of reminded me of a happy carefree kid with that grin on his face. I can’t seem to erase that smile from my memory even now.

At that same salon (AURA), I also sat next to the actor from Speed ScandalCha Tae Hyun. He was getting a scalp treatment like me and we had to sit next to each other in a private room. He was complaining to his stylist cause the gathering he had to attend wouldn’t have any real food and would only have wine and some appetizers like cheese and stuff. Listening to him whine about there being no real food made him sound sort of cheap or hungry, depending on how you interpret that conversation. When I went to get my hair rinsed, I saw him stand next to another famous actor and that’s when I realized how short they both were in real life.

At other times, while waiting around for my stylist, I saw Lee Min Ki. I never once thought he was good looking so I thought he looked weirder in real life than in the movies.

I also saw Ryu Seung Bum. His hair was really long and oily looking so I didn’t have a good impression of him. He doesn’t walk straight but hunched over like he doesn’t want to be conspicuous. I thought to myself that it was good that he came to do something about it, but later he left with the same hair except it was no longer greasy looking.

There is a TV program called Yoo Hee Yeol’s Sketchbook where famous singers come out as guests and perform. Everyone in the audience shows up for the taping not knowing who the guests are in advance. They don’t want to be overcrowded if it’s someone big and not have enough people if it’s a slow night without anyone famous. I think I had a pretty decent night cause I got to sit up close near the front. I watched the show a few days after it was taped and I saw the back of my head on TV a few times when the camera panned out. What I remember the most about that taping was one particular camera guy whose job it was to look out over the audience, study them, and look for interesting faces to take shots of the audience’s close-ups. He was awfully good looking to be working behind the camera and I found myself studying his features more than who was on stage.

The host of the show (Yoo Hee Yeol) was sort of skinny and short and I didn’t find him all that amusing, but the audience kept laughing at his jokes. A famous singer named Lee Sora came out and sang four songs. I remember thinking, “Boy, she has an angelic voice.”



Then a younger singer, a member of a girl group (Hyorin from Sistar), sang so well I sat up and took notice. She has funny hair though. It’s really puffy, and she was also wearing a fluffy skirt so I got distracted by all that “fluffy and puffiness.”

The other boy band members were G.O. from Mblaq, and Sungkyu from Infinite. The Infinite member brought his group members with him, but they sat in the audience. Right before he went on stage, they did rock paper scissors to see who would be the one to go on stage to sing and he won.

Both sang well, but one sang better and I can’t remember which one. I think it might have been the Mblaq member. But anyway, I didn’t realize that boy band members could sing this well.

All the younger singers (three total) each sang one song, and took off right after filming. Lee Sora was the first one to go on, so in between songs she was interviewed by the host. She is over 40 but she loves to stay home and play one of those games that end with “craft,” like “Warcraft” or “Starcraft.” If you know what she looks like, that is like the last thing you would guess she knew how to do, but evidently she is an avid gamer.

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Even though I got my biggest wish from last year and met Yoo Ah In, there is still a handful more I would love to meet, including Kim Soo Hyun, Song Joong Ki and Kim Jae Won. My list won’t be complete until I have “met” all my favorites. One of these days I will have the guts to say what I didn’t get to say to Jang Dong Gun and finally utter the words, “Thank you for acting so well – it’s meant a lot to me and I’m sure many others. Keep up the good work.” Maybe if I can get all that out without stuttering, that will earn me a handshake. I could totally go for that.

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20 Responses to Celebrity Sightings: Softy’s edition, part 2

  1. blue says:

    The part about Lee Eon made me miss him so much. What a sad loss of a young man’s life.

    And I break into a chuckle every time I read your last sentence about Ryu Seung Bum! It gets me every. freaking. time., even when I know what is coming. LOL.

    • Kristal says:

      Too bad Gong Hyo Jin wasn’t with him!

    • Softy says:

      I have to cross that bridge every day and it was so hard to see the chalk marks where his bike hit the rails. Right after his death, lots of ppl were around there – they were measuring out the accident site. For days I cried during his funeral footage cuz I loved him in CP and Who are you – if you go to the CP cafe, there are written notes around his photo – it’s so sad.
      About RSB, i feel bad cuz i made him sound like a bum but in real life without any makeup, he has a nice face – manly and dignified- it’s just that his hair was covering too much of it. So glad he cut it and worked out now cuz he looks so much better. Also I liked that he was hunched over as he walked, showed he was humble without even saying anything. He got my respect for that alone. Other stars walk around and stuff, but he stays put in the section reserved for celebrities where they are away from prying eyes. I can see why they would want privacy cuz no one wants their pic taken right in the middle of getting highlights or a perm – star or not – you still look pretty silly. I got to sit in that section once – all that time I imagined it would look so lavish and upscale, but it looks just like the rest of the salon – just more boring cuz there isn’t anything to stare at. Why is it always better in our imagination? I hate when my bubbles burst cuz I take such care to build ’em up 🙂

    • ditdut says:

      I know, that part about Lee Eon made me smile. It makes me sad every time I watch Coffee Prince and he would break out into his signature grin.

  2. Kristal says:

    Umm, Lee Min Ho and Hyun Bin in the same complex? I would seriously like camp out there for days! Of course I am super shy so I would totally be to afraid to say anything to them (plus I don’t speak Korean and wouldn’t want to scare them) but just to catch a glimpe of those beauties up close and in their natural habitat! SIGH.

  3. You really acted polite in the hair salon and I think it’s even common sense to give celebs their private space at least while doing their hair. LOL.
    After what I’ve watched and read what happend with Yamapi in Southkorea I totally got afraid of korean fans. Or how Taecyeon and his 1-week-date of the Mnetsc@scandal episode got chased by fans even though they know it’s just show. I’m still not sure about the korean way of fanshipping and I really don’t want to jugde ALL. It’s just sounds scary when reading the news. So it’s good to know being able to read about a respectful fan in person. ^^
    Thanks for the entertaining entry!
    BTW is your stylist female or male? And is it hard to get into the salon as permanent costumer if the salon is known for its celeb custumers?

    • Softy says:

      My stylist is female and she used to do gong yoo’s hair too (before army) but not sure these days cuz I don’t bring him up in conversation anymore. Aura, the hair salon, changed to a more exclusive location so the price doubled. My stylist moved to her 3rd salon last year (the one featured in LTM where YEH got her perm) None of these hair salons are exclusive to just stars so anyone off the street can make an appt, but keep in mind the rates to get your hair done varies from one location to another. The price range for hair salons that most A list stars go to are steep so the cost pretty much keeps away any screaming lovestruck teens. What I noticed the most is that male actors like routine and stick with the same stylist for years, but female stars switch up stylists once in a while.

  4. vasou says:

    So jealous. If I were in Korea, I would like to meet 3 stars. Kang Ji Hwan, Hyun Bin and Gong Yoo.

  5. melusine says:

    Puahaha @ Seung-Beom! I still love him though, despite the greasy hair. He finally got a haircut btw.^^

    I have so many favorite K-stars I would love to meet, but part of me doesn’t want to get disillusioned if they turn out to be douches (et tu, Lee Jung-Jae?).

    Thanks for the fan sightings, Softy! So fun to read them.

  6. Iviih says:

    Ooooh softy I envy you. You was able to see Lee Sora, LMH, Keanu Reeves, Hyorin, Son Ye Jin, Gong Yoo… Ahhhhh ><

    Keanu, I find him so charming, he is aging but still looks fine!

    Hyorin I love to watch Immortal song just because of her, her voice is amazing, so powerful and all! Lucky you!

    Lee Sora, her songs and voice are very good too. I love the feelings she put in her songs…

    Son Ye Jin! Oh I was going to ask you was she looked but since you were in a hurry… lol

    Hope you met Kim Jae Won (and tell us if he is really that good person and if you are able to survive his killer smile tell us every detail 😀 ), Kim Soo Hyun, awww hope you see him too, hope you don't spot him smoking (yeah he smokes T_T)

    Thanks Softy for sharing these things!!! Muaaah*

  7. Iviih says:

    Btw, I’m saving all their adress you say and all, when I go to Korea I’ll walk in these places to maybe spot one actor/actress XD

  8. mizweng says:

    Is it possible to be this envious of one’s good fortune??? am not into money or fame BUT am so jealous of you being in SK and having the chance to see these wonderful K stars…I have a wish list of Korean male celebrities that I would love to see…and the top goes to Kang Ji Hwan where I would gladly follow him around, if I may… wouldn’t mind seeing Won Bin, Hyun Bin and Lee Dong Wook while strutting the streets…and definitely would love to sit besides Gong Yoo while having my hair done or stare at Lee Min Ho and Yoo Ah In for hours in whatever event they might have… Oh well, halmoni…dream on!!!!

  9. So3 says:

    Dear softy, thanks so much for your sharing! enjoyed this 2-part series a lot!

    And I’m looking forward to reading how you meet Kim Jae Won in the future – do hope you will get to take a pic of him with his “killer smile”!!!

  10. ohspark says:

    AHAHAHAHA My favorite has to be Ryu Seung Beom’s account 😛 I’ve always wanted to go to a recording session for a music show. My favorite was Yoon Do Hyun’s, but it’s canceled now. Anyways, you’re so lucky to have seen so many stars. The salon you go to sounds pretty famous~

    If you ever meet Song Joong Ki, Kim Soo Hyun, and Kim Jae Won, PLEASE TELL. 😀

    I’m in Korea now, so hopefully I can catch a glimpse of some celebrities. So far I’ve seen Lee Kyu Han, f(x), and Oh Sang Jin. Other celebrities I’ve encountered in the past are Big Bang, Gummy, Se7en, and Sean. However, I would trade all these experiences just to see SJK lolol (do I sound like a rabid fangirl yet? :P)

  11. Laica says:

    Wow I’m in awe! I’ve never met a single celebrity, coincidentally or not. You have amazing luck 🙂

    Thank you for sharing this, I feel like I vicariously sighted some of my favourite stars!

    • I’ve never met a celebrity either so I’m super jealous! Apparently Claire Danes and Matt Damon came to my high school once when they were shooting a movie close by but of course it was before I was a student there! UGH

  12. doozy says:

    Wow, thanks for sharing softy! I love reading these. So glad to hear that LMH is nice in real life. *whew*

  13. Fanderay says:

    I have to admit, I find your love of Keanu Reeves quite random and hilarious. I just picture him in Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey and I crack up.

    You seem like quite the devoted salon-goer, and I kept thinking, “I wonder what kind of hairstyle she has!” Did you conveniently go for more haircuts while CP was filming?

    Also, I’m guessing it was Starcraft that Lee Sora was playing. It’s actually a running joke amongst gamers that ALL Koreans play Starcraft. To be fair, I’ve never been in an internet cafe and seen a Korean that was playing something else, so there’s definitely some truth to the stereotype! That game is so big over there that Blizzard (the game company) finally decided to sue over broadcast rights. Ooh, or maybe she was playing World of Warcraft…that’s more likely for her demographic I suppose.

    Anyways, my fingers are crossed that you’ll get to see KSH, SJK and KJW. I’m suspicious that KJW is secretly Caucasian.

  14. supah says:

    I am absolutely gobsmacked reading all your celebrity sightings. Softy, you are a lucky, lucky cow. I am so jealo, I could burst. Haha!

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