My Not-So-Good First Impression Of Taenggu

Here’s my first post for Getting To Know Taenggu series!

In my previous post NOT COINCIDENCE, IT’S DESTINY (WARNING: RANTINGS AHEAD), I revealed that I didn’t actually have a very good first impression of Taenggu. Meeting her was very special and different from meeting any other kpop idols. I didn’t know her at first by listening to her songs, watching her MVs, seeing her photos or listening to her radio shows. It was by reading a local chinese newspaper article about her at home in 2010. (I was a first-year university student in NUS then.)

Back then, I considered myself a SuperJunior fan. Although I might have heard of this girl group called Girls’ Generation who are also under the same SM company, I didn’t know any of the members, nor had I listened to their songs before. One fateful afternoon at home, I happened to be reading our local chinese newspapers, Lianhe Wanbao (I used to enjoy reading the entertainment section a lot back then). I came across a large article (BIG NEWS in Singapore leh!) about the leader of Girls’ Generation, Kim Taeyeon who was here in Singapore for a holiday with her family.


The following is a translation of what the article says. I will highlight the main points of this article in bold, the parts which formed my first bad impressions of her.

Credits: Clarence Neo @ Facebook


The leader of SNSD, one of the most popular Korean pop groups, SNSD or Girls’ Generation, had arrived in Singapore secretly with her family for a short holiday. However, once she was spotted by her fans, she was followed everywhere by over a hundred fans.

SNSD, the popular Kpop girl group groomed by SM Entertainment, is also Super Junior’s junior in the the Korean music industry, have a rather large loyal group of fans (SONES) in SG despite not having performed or visited Singapore since their debut in 07. On 31st May, Kim Tae Yeon had made used of her holiday break and visited Singapore with her family while travelling in low profile. (All 9 members of SNSD are currently on vacation before continuing with their activities.)

It is believed that for her first trip to SG, Tae Yeon has been travelling in low profile and she visited Sentosa’s Universal Studios, Vivocity, as well as travelled on the ‘Duck Tours’ without any crew or bodyguards around.

Kim Tae Yeon was spotted at the Singapore Flyer, dressed in casual wear, along with sunglasses to try to remain as low profile as possible, but she was still spotted by her sharp eyed fans there. The fans shouted excitedly, kept cheering and calling out her name while taking pictures and flashing the cameras right in her face, causing her to say ‘’please no pictures’’ in a slightly offended tone. The 18 secs clip taken of the incident has been uploaded online, and had active response, hitting over 25k views already.

Previously, when FTIsland had visited Singapore, one of their members had been ‘ambushed’ outside the hotel by fans.

Similarly, Kim Tae Yeon had also encountered crazy fans, who were rumored to have pulled at her hair. (However, there is another version of the incident where an itchy handed fan had reached out and grabbed at her hands.)

After the news had leaked, fans had left many messages online reprimanding the unruly actions of pulling at Tae Yeon’s hair and hands. Some fans had also reprimanded the others, saying that “Tae Yeon is here for a holiday, and we should respect her privacy, as well as care about her feelings…. Please do not harass her, and if you see her please do not follow her and take photos”.

It is said that Tae Yeon has already left Singapore and returned to Korea.

Online fans had mentioned on her FACEBOOK fan page that it was already part of her schedule to come to Singapore for a short trip, so she did not leave Singapore earlier just because she was spotted by fans. They also stated that Tae Yeon was not angry about her fans’ actions, but she felt apologetic to her family members who were travelling with her.

This section is under the same article but not related to Tae Yeon’s trip in Singapore:

SNSD has come out strong, and together with their seniors Super Junior, they have taken the lion’s share of album sales in Singapore for the top half of the year.

SNSD is a 9-girl group groomed by SM Entertainment which had debuted in 07, and within 2 years, they had achieved high levels of popularity within Korea, China, Taiwan, and Thailand as well as within many other Asian countries. Each member had roles in movies, TV dramas, hosted television programs and had also been seen in many commercials. At the same time, various members are also well versed in Chinese, English and Japanese among many other talents.

Recently, for the top half of the year, results of albums sales in Korea has shown that SNSD, together with Super Junior have the highest records of sales, the 2 groups taking 1st and 2nd place respectively, with album sales shooting past 100k. At the same time, only the 2 groups SNSD and SJ had taken the top 4 places for album sales, while the mini album of Kpop king Rain had only taken 6th place.

Translated by SNSDinmylife (Soshified Singapore)
QC-ed & Edited by qiuxue (smirk) (Soshified Singapore) @ soshified

After reading this article, my first reaction was, I felt really shameful as a Singaporean. I remembered thinking to myself, “OMG, what happened to our society these days? How could fans be so rude and harass her like that? Just give her some privacy please, and stop following her around. Aren’t Singaporeans supposed to be disciplined and respectful? Such a disgrace to Singapore.. And now she would have left with a bad first impression of Singapore because of this…”

On the other hand, I naturally also didn’t have a good impression of the artiste herself either. I thought she seemed quite arrogant and big-headed. Like how most other kpop idols gave me those 高不可攀 (too high to be reached) kind of feeling. But I have to clarify that it was because I was totally new to this idol named Kim Taeyeon back then so I had no idea how her real or at least her on-screen personality was like. Although the article also explained that she was being protective of her family’s privacy at that time and I could understand that, it still left some sort of unpleasant first impression in me since then. It wasn’t about her personality, but more about the situation itself.

After that, I didn’t have the ‘face’ to even watch that clip uploaded online and see for myself how the rumoured harassment actually took place (probably afraid of hurting my pride as a Singaporean, hahaha). I didn’t pursue the matter any further and just pushed it to the back of my head. But this memory of myself reading this newspaper article in the living room at home had somehow left a very deep impression in me till today and even the fact that a famous Korean idol like her would choose to come to Singapore for a holiday for the first time, made it seem like it was some sort of a destiny that brought us together.

And there was at least one thing pleasant I remembered from that article about her. It was her Chinese name 金太妍 (pronounced jīn tài yán). Sounded really beautiful to me… Yes, 金太妍… This 金太妍 would eventually appear in my life again a few months later…


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