Thursday, September 22, 2011

연애시대 - 아버지 말씀

"Alone in Love", a Korean drama aired in 2006, has a history as long as this blog. Five years ago, I watched it with the help of subtitles, I like it then. Now that I can hear Korean well, I appreciate it even more. The most memorable scene of the drama has to be the conversation between Eunho and her father in the last episode. Watching the scene never failed to prop me up whenever I was down. Whatever advices Eunho's father gave her, are also applicable to anyone. We should listen to our hearts and not be held down by mundane rules. Happiness doesn't come easily. We have to work hard for it.

A short synopsis of the scene:

Eunho was at a lost. She couldn't decide if she should reunite with her ex-husband who had since remarried but still loved her. On one hand, she did not think she could live her life without him. On the other, she could not bring herself to break up his marriage. Trapped in a painful dilemma, she called her father, a pastor, over the air by identifing herself as Miss K. The first part of the conversation went on as if her father was giving counsel to a stranger who was lost. In the second part, her father put away his pastor's role and assumed his father's role. As a father, his utmost concern was her daughter's happiness and not his religious duties. His heart-warming quotes:

"Miss K, God said thou shalt not lie... Lying to others is not right, but lying to yourself is also wrong. Do what your heart tells you."

"Miss K, didn't your heart says you can't live without that person? That person also can't live without you, isn't it? Do as what your heart wishes."

"To sin is human. Miss K, do you wish to be happy? Do you expect happiness to come easily? Do you think hesitation, indecisiveness and concern over how people would look at you will make you happy? If you don't try hard, you cannot be happy."

"Eunho, if you don't work hard and do your best, you cannot be happy. Only if you become happy, the world will become happy. Let's us pray together to Lord for forgiveness. Eunho, you must be happy."

《연애시대 16회 중에서》

행복해져라 은호야

은호: 저는 원주 사는 K라고 하는데요. 좋아하는 남자가 있거든요. 오래전부터 좋아했는데 최근에야 그 사람없이는 안되겠구나 알게됐어요. 근데 그 사람은 이미 결혼한 사람이예요. 목사님 어떡하죠? 내가 어떡해야 할까요?

아버지: K양 본인 마음은 확실한 겁니까? 정말 그 남자 아니면 안되는 겁니까?

은호: 어떨때는 그럭저럭 살수 있을것 같다가도 또 어떨때는 이대로는 못 견디겠다 싶기도 하고요. 그냥 눈물이 나올때도 있고, 멍해질때도 있고 그래요. 그 사람을 더 이상은 만날수 없다라고 생각하면서 부터는 사는게 지루해졌어요.

아버지: 상대방 마음은 어떻습니까?

은호: 그 사람은 나랑 다시 시작하고 싶어해요.

아버지: 힘든 문제군요. K양, 하나님은 속이지 말라 하셨습니다.

은호: 역시 안되겠죠?

아버지: 남을 속여서도 안되지만 또한 자기 자신을 속여서는 안됩니다. 마음이 가는대로 하십시요.

은호: 그게 무슨?

아버지: K양 그 사람 아니면 안되겠다고 마음이 말하고 있지 않습니까? 그 사람 역시 K양 아니면 안되겠다고 말했다면서요. 마음이 하자는대로 하십시요.

은호: 그렇게 할 수는 없어요. 그 사람 부인은 어떡해요. 내가 축가까지 불러줬는데 둘이 행복하라고 그렇게 말했는데.

아버지: 진심이였습니까?

은호: 네.

아버지: 지금의 진심은 무엇입니까?

은호: 죄를 지을 순 없어요.

아버지: 죄를 짓기때문에 인간입니다. K양 행복해지고 싶죠? 행복하기가 쉬운 줄 아십니까? 망설이고 , 주저하고 , 눈치보고 , 그렇게해서 행복해질수 있다고 생각합니까? 노력하지 않으면 행복해질 수 없는겁니다.

은호야! ... 최선을 다해 노력하지 않으면 행복해 질 수 없다. 니가 행복해져야만 이 세상도 행복해진다. 하느님한테는 내가 같이 용서를 빌어주마. 행복해져라 은호야.

Monday, September 12, 2011

거북이의 꿈

When we are caught up in our daily rat race, how many of us still remember the race between the hare and the tortoise? The 'hare' is well-endowed with speed to win any race. However, 'tortoise' is not only born to move slowly, it is burdened with a heavy shell.

"I crawled slowly to where I am now … a person who rises up very fast will have time to take a breather in between. Although I have to crawl, I won’t stop until I reach my destination.", wrote Kim Byung-man (김병만) in his autobiography 『꿈이 있는 거북이는 지치지 않습니다』 (Tortoise with dream will not be exhausted).

Tortoise with dream will not be exhausted
Kim Byung-man is one of the top gagman (comedian) in Korea. He gained his popularity by starring as the 'master' (달인, 達人) in the ‘Master’ segment of the KBS ‘Gag Concert’. 'Master', lack of a better description, is an acrobatic slapstick comedy. Kim performed different stunts and skills every week and always left his audience awe-struck and in stitches. What made his performance amazing is there is no camera tricks. Everything he did was real actions. A common question in everyone's mind is, "How did he manage to do that?"

Kim might not know the answer himself. As a child, Kim knew only hardship and failure. Because of that, he developed massive inferiority complex. His father turned to heavy drinking after his business failed. His mother worked as a helper in an eatery and was barely able to support a family of four children with her meagre salary. After graduating from high school, Kim worked as an odd job labourer in construction sites. His application to various institutes and universities were all rejected. Despite that, he did not give up his dream of becoming a gagman. To pursue it, he moved to Seoul and lived in a roof-top room. His road to success was anything but smooth. He was rejected four times by MBC and three times by KBS and was only accepted by KBS in 2002 on his eighth attempt.

"There was time when I kept going to the drugstore and had 40 sleeping pills with me… but the lights from the broadcasting stations in Yeoui-do were shining brightly at night even though I was crying my heart out in my roof-top room. Finally, I decided to pick myself up and move on." (Page 73)

In his autobiography, Kim Byung-man is no longer simply a gagman who makes you laugh. He symbolises someone who overcomes childhood hardship, never gives up despite repeated failures, only to work harder and finally becomes the ‘master’ whom many people love. The book was on sale since August 2011. It was reported 52,000 copies were sold within the first week of launch, earning itself a place in the bestseller chart.

In the press conference to launch his book, he spoke about his parents, “When time was hard, I felt a lot of resentment towards my mother. I always blamed my parents for the plight I was in. I used to press my father for an answer to why he made me so short (his height is 158.7m). But today, the applause I received was precisely because of my height and I am thankful for that.”

I like one statement which Kim made during the press conference: 사람은 태어나는 순간부터 내 자신을 내가 만들어가는 것이다 (The moment we were born, we were responsible for our own destiny)

Kim Byung-man may be successful today, he has not forgotten he is a 'tortoise'. If you have not seen a 'tortoise' won a race, here is one. Below are two videos of his 'Master' segment. When you watch his performance, you may wish to remember what he said, "Suffering from bruises and injuries are quite common but audience come to watch comedy and be entertained, I have to make my performance enjoyable and deliver laughter. What I can’t do is to show my worry, sorrow and pain." Those are words of a true master of comedy.

Master of soap bubbles

Master of smashing with fingers

It is still true that many 'tortoises' will not win any race when competing with the 'hares'. But more important than winning is to complete the race. For that, I would choose to be a tortoise than a rat.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

모르는 사이에

When we just focus on meeting deadlines and getting works done, it is easy to lose touch of time and our emotional ability to feel. It is almost autumn again and I thought I just came back from Korea.

In Gyeonggi Shrine in Jeonju

Metasequoia Forest Road in Damyang