Run, Jang-Mi – E12

Taeja turns into the neighborhood sweetie and buzzes around Jang-Mi like a worried dad.  Unfortunately, this behavior irritates the guilt-ridden Jang-Mi, who’s trying to make one of the biggest decisions of her life…  In the end, Jang-Mi’s friend does everyone a favor and confronts Mincheol.

THE RECAP

The ER doctor informs Taeja that Jang-Mi fell from exhaustion and malnutrition.  He warns Taeja, who he probably believes is her guardian that it could have been dangerous since Jang-Mi is pregnant.  However, the child is safe.

Shock washes over Taeja’s face for a moment.

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The next thing we know, Taeja is updating Jang-Mi’s mother that Jang-Mi is safe.  They are just taking a detour to eat dinner.  He reassures her before returning back to Jang-Mi, who just woke up.

Taeja helps Jang-Mi sit up and asks her if she knew about her situation.  Jang-Mi is annoyed that the doctor told him and ignores Taeja’s nagging that she should have taken care of herself better as a pregnant girl.

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Not feeling particularly happy about the situation, Jang-Mi decides to leave the hospital as soon as possible.  Outside, Taeja quickly takes off his own jacket for Jang-Mi.  Because, what human would let a pregnant woman walk in the winter without a jacket?

Like a whiny child, Taeja complains that he’s starving and even jokes that Jang-Mi should lose weight; she’s so heavy.  One glare from Jang-Mi quiets him down, but he pulls her into a korean barbecue restaurant to eat dinner.   He gives Jang-Mi the first piece of cooked meat and explains that chivalry is ingrained into him due to his having studied abroad.  Grudgingly, Jang-Mi starts eating when Taeja jokes that she shouldn’t assume that chivalry will extend to her feeding him.

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When they walk home, Taeja continues to badger Jang-Mi about who the father is.  Jang-Mi tells him to keep it a secret and snaps at him to stay out of her personal business.  Taeja explodes at this and yells back that he carried her to the hospital in the winter and even bought her expensive Korean barbecue.   He whines that she’s being unfair by being rude when he did nothing but help her.

Probably feeling a little guilty at his words, Jang-Mi tells Taeja that there is no father of the child.  At this point, they arrive at home and run into Joonhyuk at the door.  Joonhyuk’s first reaction is to stare at Jang-Mi, who’s wearing Taeja’s jacket.  Jang-Mi quickly takes off his jacket and returns it before going in.

Taeja also escapes Joonhyuk’s questions with the excuse that he’s tired from working all day and retreats into his room.

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At home, Jang-Mi tells her mom that she fell asleep at work because she was so tired.  As she changes into her regular clothes, the ultrasound picture drops onto the blanket and she quickly picks it up.

Jang-Mi heads for the bathroom, where she sobs as she thinks about Jandi’s words…Her warning that Jang-Mi needs to make a decision soon and that Jang-Mi should make a decision, which she could tell her mom.

In his room, Taeja wonders about what Jang-Mi is keeping a secret.

The next day, Joonhyuk finishes a team meeting.  Before Jandi can leave, she gets a call from Jang-Mi and asks her if she has made a decision, which Joonhyuk overhears.

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As Jang-Mi comes out of the bathroom, Taeja grabs the mop from her and commences mopping.  Jang-Mi yells at him for acting weird and suspicious.  Taeja whines that he can’t let a pregnant woman do hard labor and Jang-Mi yells at him to act normal and pretend that he didn’t hear anything.  Taeja whines that he’s getting stressed by all of Jang-Mi’s talk about acting normal.

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Taeja’s grandfather speaks with his doctor, who tells him that it’s too late to have a surgery.  However, he can begin treatment, which would help him live longer.  Taeja’s grandfather responds that he wants to keep this a secret as everyone dies some day.  He just needs some more pain killers.  He reassures his doctor that he will get treatment.

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Afterwards, Taeja’s grandfather calls Joonhyuk into his office.  He explains that since another year is already over, he’s been thinking a lot.  He asks Joonhyuk to take care of Taeja as he thinks the main issue in his life is Taeja.  He also comments that the tea is especially good today.

Picking up on the unusual behavior, Joonhyuk asks Taeja’s grandfather’s assistant if he’s sick or has been visiting the hospital.  The assistant tells him that he doesn’t know of anything unusual.  The only thing is that Taeja’s grandfather gets lunchboxes three times a week from Mr. Jang’s cafe three times a week.

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Meanwhile, Taeja grabs the tray of rice cakes from Jang-Mi and mutters that he told her to let him handle all the heavy lifting.  Chef Bon and the female assistant chef comment that Taeja’s behaving so strangely. Chef Bon straight up asks Jang-Mi if she’s seeing Taeja and Jang-Mi runs out of the kitchen to yell at Taeja.  Meanwhile, the assistant chef tells him that he has no tact; he should have pretended he didn’t see anything.

Outside the kitchen, Jang-Mi yells at Taeja for acting so different that people are suspicious.  In the middle of her yelling, Taeja’s grandfather calls about his lunchbox.  However, Jang-Mi had completely forgotten.  She convinces him to come in to eat in the cafe.  She promises that he can pay $2.50 and she’d pick up the rest of the tab.

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In the cafe, Taeja’s grandfather enjoys himself by persistently requesting a side dish from Taeja.  Jang-Mi tells Taeja to indulge the grandpa, who’s less privileged.  Taeja only agrees because of Jang-Mi and slams the side dish on the table before stalking off.  Feeling bad for the grandfather, Jang-Mi apologizes to Taeja’s grandpa and explains that Taeja’s is the resident troublemaker, making Taeja’s grandfather laugh.

At Mincheol’s place, his mom gleefully calculates Mincheol’s current profits.  She comments that Mincheol should have started his own business sooner.  However, when Mincheol’s father comes home, she quickly hides it in one of Mincheol’s father’s jackets.

After she leaves the room, Mincheol’s father quickly checks his clothes to see if Mincheol’s mother had found his own secret account book.  to his surprise, he finds two account books in the jacket pocked.

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Immediately, Mincheol’s father goes to the livingroom to confront his wife and Mincheol arrives.  Mincheol’s father asks how the same amount of the junsae money went from his wife’s account into his son’s account during the same time that Jang-Mi came to ask for her wedding gift back.

Mincheol’s mom retorts that he shouldn’t ask a question if he already knows the answer, which makes Mincheol’s father sigh in exasperation.  He tells his son that he expected this of his wife…However, he expected more from his son, who went to a top medical school.

Instead of feeling remorse, Mincheol responds that he did it because he’s that kind of a man.  He was tired of being a salaried doctor and seeing his friends, who studied less than him in school, open up their own hospitals because they were born in rich families.  He even adds that he hoped that he would be able to change his life by marrying into a rich family, but that didn’t work.  Therefore, he feels entitled to the wedding gift.

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Feeling completely disappointed at his family, Mincheol’s father leaves to go to a nearby bar.  He orders 500 mL of beer and some snacks.  He drinks it all and asks for another glass, which the bartender (our assistant chef!) refuses. She tells him that she only allows the customers to drink as much that would keep them happy.  Mincheol’s father wonders about how hard it is to get completely drunk and finds himself glancing at the bar tender’s body.

The next day, Jang-Mi goes to watch the kids at the neighborhood park.  She apologizes to her unborn child and hopes that the child would be born into a better family in the future.  She then goes to the hospital to get an abortion.

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However, when Jang-Mi lays down, she hears another set of heartbeats.  She jumps up and asks the nurse if she heard the heartbeats.  The nurse consoles her that Jang-Mi is just stressed by the upcoming surgery.  Jang-Mi tries to lay down again but jumps back up when she hears the heartbeats again.  She runs to Jandi and cries that she can’t go through with the surgery as she hears her baby’s heartbeats.

At a museum, Minjoo asks Taeja’s mother why she didn’t pursue the arts when she loves it so much.  Taeja’s mother explains that her family on both sides were in the legal profession.  She wasn’t allowed to pursue any other route.  Minjoo asks if she ever regrets it and Taeja’s mom answers that she doesn’t; she was able to have Taeja and he will become the owner of SL Food.

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They get up to pick up Taeja for dinner.  Taeja and Minjoo joke around like best friends and the three head off to a nice restaurant.  Coincidentally, they end up at the same restaurant as Joonhyuk and Taehee.  Taeja calls out to Joonhyuk in surprise and the atmosphere gets tense.

Taehee decides to eat elsewhere and her mom comments that it would be better.  The two leave.

At a cafe, Jang-Mi tells her friend that she’s decided to keep the baby.

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Speaking of cute and innocent romances. Jang-Mi’s mother brings over extra food to Mr. Jang.  She explains that she’s thankful about all of the free morning coffees.  When he tells her that he doesn’t have rice, Jang-Mi’s mom invites him over to her house for dinner.  She gets excited at the prospect of not eating dinner alone and grabs his arm.  This trigger’s Mr. Jang’s heart and he pulls away quickly.  He tells her that he actually had rice and Jang-Mi’s mom leaves.

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At the same time, Jandi does what all best friends should do.  She goes to confront Mincheol with the ultrasound picture.

At Mr. Jang’s cafe, Jang-Mi brings out the trash, which Taeja takes from her.  As Taeja leaves, Jang-Mi gets a call from Mincheol.

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Jang-Mi goes to meet up with Mincheol, who asks if she’s pregnant with his child.  Jang-Mi responds that it’s not his child; the child is hers.

MY TWO CENTS

Phew! I’m SO glad that Jandi went off and told Mincheol within the episode.  I’m not a fan of the I-will-suffer-by-myself characters.  It took two people to make the mistake (creating a child when both were not prepared for the significant responsibility).  As such, both should take responsibility.

I do understand that as the woman, carrying the baby, Jang-Mi has a right to the decisions over her own body.  I fully support that. However, I do not think that this means that she has to suffer the heavy burden of having responsibility over another human being by herself.  She already has to take care of her naive and needy mother.  She doesn’t need to add an extremely needy child to the same situation…not to mention the cost of raising a child….

Now that the rant is out of the way.  I spent the whole half hour completely bemused by Taeja’s 180 transformation.  I don’t believe that he’s fallen for Jang-Mi.  I don’t want to offend anyone, but I feel like I’m watching a child with his new toy.  To Taeja, Jang-Mi presents this anomaly in his life.  He’s had an extremely sheltered and limited life due to the unique circumstances of his childhood, which was a mix of privilege and tragedy.  He’s only exposure to people were probably Joonhyuk, Mincheol, Minjoo, his sister and his family.  Once Joonhyuk coaxed him out of his shell, he was in full-blown, I’m a little prince mode, which likely got aggravated by his being surrounded by sycophants.

All of a sudden, his world changes as he’s being sent to live in a normal house…working a normal job (at a starting position, even!)…and working under someone who lives as if this job is everything to her survival…which it is.  To Jang-Mi, the job symbolizes stability and responsibility.  She’s able to provide for herself and her mother and take pride that she has a chance at working for a large corporation with job security, benefits, and potential to grow professionally.  Taeja probably does not understand any of this or the fact that his situation is the direct result of his grandfather’s new-found mortality… Unconsciously, he’s likely connecting the new situation with Jang-Mi.  We saw little bits of this when Taeja didn’t play without a care after sneaking off.  Rather, he would either be extremely proud that he escaped his babysitter or wonder why she’s not coming after him…It’s like a child, who wants attention from his babysitter!

I may be reading things into this, but the drama hinted that Taeja is a sweet guy.  He tears up watching movies and is bored in life.  Randomly, he finds out that his current babysitter has a huge secret and is pregnant.  To him, it would feel a little like he’s taking the auxiliary role in a novel or drama…Kind of meta O_O.   So he starts helping Jang-Mi like a kid with his new puppy that he wants to pamper.  I hope that I don’t offend anyone. I really do support Jang-Mi and I respect that she picked herself up from being a spoiled brat within an extremely short period of time… However, this is just what I think is happening with Taeja’s character…

On a side note, I know this is getting long but… I think Mincheol’s mom better wake up that if she treats her husband like a useless idiot, he will look to affirmation elsewhere.  Also interesting is that this character seems to be played by Jung Ae-Youn, who played the older sister in Can We Get Married- yep, the one who fell in love with a married man in that drama, too…hmmmm.

Finally…sorry to add my humble opinions about fashion again…but… Jang-Mi KEEPS wearing the plaid jackets.  First red plaid and then black plaid.  I think she pulls it off well, since she’s naturally pretty and has a small face.  It also helps that the jackets are only half length instead of full-length, which are less-farmy…yet…probably less warmer.  Just a thought that I’ve been seeing plaid everyone.  I wonder what is going on with the fashion coordinators of daily dramas.  Is some uber luxury brand saying that plaid is the new farm-chic?  I have to say, I disagree.  Plaid is extremely hard to pull off for most people and looks too rustic.  Just my opinion. >.<

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