Hello, y’all! This is pinkblossom, kidnapping our lovely whitecarrot’s baby. Just for today. Or…not? We’ll have to see ‘bout that one! Hahahaa!
For those of you who’ve been aboard the 1997 train/rollercoaster/bandwagon/ship/whatever-you-wanna-call-it with us here at Carrotblossom Patch, you prolly know that I wasn’t a part of the crew from Day 1. I’m not a huge fan of high school theatrics – in fact, I have a secret penchant for middle-aged romance. Nonetheless, whitecarrot mercilessly teased and tempted me with every marvelous recap and preview and thoughtful post. I tried to stand firm. But the Baby Daddy tally-up was the proverbial straw that broke camel pinkblossom’s back. I HAD TO KNOW. Aaaack! Now, 12 episodes later, my contacts have withered, my glasses have permanently fogged up, my voice box makes no sounds, and my dog is scared to come near me – she apparently doesn’t appreciate flailing arms and legs.
The recaps got a loooot longer than I had expected, so I’m going to post them separately by episode. Whitecarrot and I will save our thoughts/reflections for another post – we need some time to gather the gabajillions of things running through our heads. 😀
Now that the long intro is over, let’s get onto the BEST episodes yet!
Episode 11: The Definition of a Relationship
The prologue keeps us in the 90s this time, as Tae-woong gets a call from the
mausoleum  columbarium where his parents’ ashes have been laid to rest. (It’s become quite popular in Korea for people to keep ashes in special buildings, much like a cemetery with urns instead of caskets. There isn’t a good equivalent English word for such a building – “mausoleum” was the closest I could get. A big thank you to hyperrealsg & NN for supplying the correct term “columbarium”!!!) He’s surprised that so much time has already passed since his parents have passed away… It’s the first time since their death that he’s used the words “mother” and “father,” that he’s thought of himself as someone’s son. And he fondly looks upon Yoon-jae, his only remaining family.
Shi-won brings over quail eggs to the Yoon brothers. Mommy is apparently on an egg roll. Hahaha pun not intended. Shi-won gets herself a bowl of rice and Tae-woong follows her into the kitchen. Their cute moment was apparently too much for poor Yoon-jae to handle, because he’s gone when they turn around looking for him. And *crack* goes my heart. Shi-won doesn’t look too happy, either.
Yoon-jae takes out the wrench Shi-won gave him as a good luck charm for the National College Entrance Exam and tosses it, narrowly missing the trashcan.
Jo Sung-mo’s “To Heaven” filters through the school PA system. Eee! I looove this song. Sung-jae says Jo Sung-mo must be ugly since he’s a “faceless singer” and bets that this song can’t become #1 on the charts. Hak-chan agrees with Sung-jae but Joon-hee and Yoon-jae bet that the song will hit #1. The terms of the bet: Loser has to go shout the name of the girl they like.
Shi-won comes into the classroom and asks to borrow Joon-hee’s headphones. He forgot his and Sung-jae’s are just nasty. So Joon-hee says to ask Yoon-jae, but Shi-won awkwardly declines and leaves… Pan to Yoon-jae with his headphones on… but his CD player off. Crack #2. Joon-hee gently turns on the player.
Mommy and Daddy leave for a one-week cruise and warn Shi-won to be careful, as there have been several cases of men preying on young women the last few weeks. They tell her to sleep over with Yoon-jae since she’ll be all alone, but she hotheadedly refuses that request. “Isn’t Yoon-jae a guy?!” Since when has he become a guy, eh, Shi-won?? *wink wink*
She asks Yoo-jung not to tell her parents she’s working a part-time job at night. I smell a set-up here… Hak-chan gets wheedled into meeting Yoo-jung’s friends.
Tae-woong is busy working at his start-up company and is already receiving awards. He sees a news report about the sexual predators and calls Shi-won to tell her not to stay out late. Shi-won, of course, says there’s no need to worry, much less call Yoon-jae.
Yoon-jae gets a call from Tae-woong, asking him to sleep over at Shi-won’s house since she’s all alone. The two cuties in question awkwardly pass each other in the hallway.
Yoo-jung meets up with old friends and waits and waits for Hak-chan to show up, texting him nonstop. Hak-chan, hilariously, has eaten a huge batch of fishcakes to avoid the meeting. Her friends wonder if this mysterious boyfriend even exists and Yoo-jung tries to make excuses. Hak-chan finally comes in but ignores Yoo-jung’s beckons and quickly exits. When Yoo-jung goes to pay the bill, though, she’s told that a young man already covered it. Elated, Yoo-jung goes out and sees Hak-chan waiting outside. She makes introductions and things are goin’ swell when Hak-chan’s mom suddenly shows up. And in that tense moment, Hak-chan brushes off Yoo-jung as “just a girl I know.” Oh noes. *covers eyes*
Shi-won gets off work and heads out… but a creeper who’s been watching her for some time follows her. Yoon-jae’s chillin’ like a bro at home when he sees a news report of a young woman who was robbed and raped.
Yoo-jung, of course, bawls her eyes out. Hak-chan tries to apologize but she instead says she’s sorry for mistaking their relationship. Hak-chan angrily says, “Do you still not know how I feel? I was just flustered and the wrong words popped out.” But Yoo-jung responds, “They say the truth comes out subconsciously.” Sad panda.
Yoon-jae sits at home, worried, and finally calls Shi-won’s home. No one, of course, picks up. Sounds of drunken arguments outside his window just make him more agitated… Shi-won calls Yoon-jae on his phone, but he’s calling her at the same time. Finally, she calls his home phone and tells him a strange man is following her. Yoon-jae runs out of the house in slippers. Tae-woong calls Yoon-jae, who says he’ll call back later, and just then a man on a bicycle almost runs Yoon-jae over. Just as the creeper’s getting close, Yoon-jae bursts out of the alley and wraps his arms around Shi-won, giving the creeper a speaking glance for good measure. Panting and dripping sweat, Yoon-jae apologizes for being late. Shi-won looks down and sees him only clad in one slipper (he lost one during the near accident), and he chastises her for staying out so late. They safely make it back home and Yoon-jae belatedly jerks back his hands from around her shoulders. Shi-won hesitates at the doorstep and Yoon-jae asks if she’d like him to stay with her awhile. Awww. She tells him his arm is bleeding a lot, which he notices for the first time. She takes his hand in hers… but he quickly jerks it away and limps home. Sad panda.
There are levels to relationships. To me, Yoon-jae is the easiest level. We were just childhood friends, a relationship easy to explain and keep. But today I gained a vague – a very vague – idea that it was possible for us to have a different relationship. A relationship of the highest level of difficulty: that between a man and a woman.
Between a man and a woman who expect different things, who want different things, who have different dreams: there can only be continuous struggle or love. … It is a very prickly and difficult relationship.
Yoon-jae goes home to clean up his arm and Tae-woong bursts into the room, breathlessly asking if he’s all right. Yoon-jae had forgotten to call him back and had missed 17 subsequent calls. Awww, these two make me cry. Tae-woong is wearing his sweater inside-out, not even noticing in his haste to come home looking for Yoon-jae. As Tae-woong tenderly cleans Yoon-jae’s wound, Yoon-jae narrates that a family is another such difficult relationship, one that lasts a lifetime.
Sung-jae and Hak-chan lose the bet when Jo Sung-mo is revealed to be a ‘flower boy’ and, on top of that, “To Heaven” reaches the top spot on the music charts. Hak-chan adorably shouts out Yoo-jung’s name and is absolved of his ‘crimes’. Hee!
Back to 2012: Shi-won says she can’t stand it anymore and declares she’s gotta at least have coffee. Hahahaa. She orders five iced Americanos for the crew and a large iced caramel mocha – with LOTS of whipped cream. She makes a potty stop and takes off her ring to wash her hands – a practice I never could understand – and predictably forgets to take it with her. Scatterbrained as always.
Meanwhile, everyone is speechless – and not in a good way – at Yoo-jung’s ginormous wedding ring, which has a huge Buddhist symbol as the centerpiece. Shi-won rejoins the crew and belatedly realizes she forgot her ring, which we learn is a couple ring. She races out and Yoon-jae sarcastically says, “I’m surprised she didn’t lose it earlier.” Tae-woong chuckles and responds, “Of course she wouldn’t lose such a special ring.” Joon-hee notes, “Shi-won always seems to wear the couple ring instead of her wedding ring,” and Sung-jae chimes in, “You know how she is. She prizes ‘comfortable’ above all else. The same goes for her husband.” Eeee! And then, a guy’s hand grabs the heavily whip-creamed coffee – wearing the same couple ring as Shi-won. Eeeeeeee!
- Answer Me 1997 Official OST Love Story
- Answer Me 1997 – Preview 13, 14
- Who is the Baby Daddy? Answer Me 1997
- Answer Me 1997 – Ep 10
- Answer Me 1997 – Ep 9
- Answer Me 1997 – Preview 11, 12
- Answer Me 1997 – Episode 7, 8
- Answer Me 1997 – Heart Attack
- Answer Me 1997 – Episode 5, 6
- Answer Me 1997 – Heart Palpitations