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Saturday, December 13, 2014

[mslee's thoughts] MISAENG Episode 15 Review

Even if this post is a week late. I still have to share my thoughts about what happened in Misaeng last week. So here goes....


Geu Rae's fate in the company does not lie on how hardworking he is. Unfortunately, his academic attainment is a hindrance to making him a permanent employee at One International. While he struggles to fit in, to learn about the company, how to do his job well, every triumph he achieved are all short lived because of his status at the company. Mr. Oh has no word of assurance towards him even if he is seeing how he tries to understand the company policies when it comes to hiring employees permanently. Mr. Oh does not believe in empty promises because at the end of the day, they are just words to pacify and calm the anxiety of a person with empty hope.

But Geu Rae continue to do his job well. He even help Steel Team to fix their problem by suggesting to fill the hole/crack of the shipping boat to avoid delays in shipment. His simple answer to their problem was appreciated so much but not by Baek Ki. There lies the difference between them. Geu Rae can think outside the box but Baek Ki is someone who depends on what he learned through textbooks. Between them, it shows that Geu Rae has the knowledge which comes from experience, from playing Baduk, from working part time then like a street smart, can easily come up with unexpected ideas that can not be learned from school. But then again, he is an intelligent boy who happens to sacrifice his studies because of financial burden.

Geu Rae made a draft of his first business plan and present it to his sunbaes in the team. It's a good enough plan but it lacks some more to be forwarded for approval. Mr. Oh is not helping him on what he missed. He was asked to sell in the street with a $100. He should be back with profits by the end of the day.

The funny thing though is that Baek Ki who saw and read Gue Rae's proposal had not explained well to Dong Sik and to his Boss why Gue Rae's plan should be rewritten. He seems to know more but thats just about it. He who thinks is superior to Geu Rae. Baek Ki was asked to join Geu Rae in selling stuffs outside the office.

When is it easy to sell something to anyone, to strangers inside the train, to plead or to convince them that they need the things you are trying to sell when you yourself feels awkward and embarrassed to start selling? The task is hard for Gue Rae. Even harder when his partner Baek Ki is not budging at his corner, only looking at him as he tried not to feel stupid while he beg them to buy. It's almost a failure task but Geu Rae never gave up. He found himself at a place where he thought he would never set foot again, The place where he learned Baduk. Baek Ki finally had a glimpsed of Geu Rae's life in the past. What he was in that place. One of the genius student who had a lot of potential but was cut short. Somehow, Baek Ki found himself looking at a new Geu Rae. Someone who could have been greater if only he did not stop studying.

The socks and the shorts remained in the plastic bag. The instructor talked to Gue Rae about how his strategy of selling is not the right way to do it. He should have not come to a place where people will buy his goods just because they know him and that they have to help him. It's like cheating. The result will not be satisfying. Words of wisdom that he needs to clear his mind and to think of new ideas to achieve his goal.

Outside, he was sad as he walked away from the life he used to have inside that building. But Gue Rae is Gue Rae, a young man who can always find ways in every problems and can see opportunities that others missed. In front of a sauna where every tired salary men and women enjoy a short break to recharge from a days work, he told Baek Ki that they will sell their socks and shorts there and then. With a bottle of soju to help Baek Ki drop his embarrassment, they set up their goods at the corner and in a loud voice start their business.

It was a success. Although he went back at the office way past the hour of deadline. Still, he showed Mr. Oh the money they earned. Geu Rae once again showed him that he has what it takes to be a trade man or a salesman. Mr. Oh asked him to write his report and submit the next day. He was given a chance. Another shot at showing them his capability in planning his business project for their team. It does not matter if he is only a temporary employee. All he wants to do is work there with his team for a long time.

Finally Bae Ki gave him the respect he deserves. There is still reservation but Baek Ki now know that Geu Rae is not someone who has been chosen to be a part of the company just because he has a good backer. He has potential, but of course, it all comes down to educational attainment. Baek Ki realized he should not feel jealous of him because everything is hard work for Gue Rae.

The episode is a revelation to Baek Ki. Sometimes, making judgments on other people immediately without knowing their past just like he and some others had done to Geu Rae would result to negative treatment and assessment towards him. But knowing his past now can somehow alter that and he can see Geu Rae for who he is and what his worth to those people he used to be with.

Life is not easy. Misaeng is continuing to showcase this kind of struggles to all newbies and how each of them conquer their own fears and hardships. Young Yi's problem also keep on arising. Financially, she is being burdened by family. She has her own issues with her father and it is making her life miserable affecting work which her team noticed. She had to get through it or ask advise. But who can she lean to when she has not gotten any warmth and support from her team? Office is another place where one can find a new family, but for Young Yi, she has to keep it all inside because even though she is a part of a team, she is also alone. Whatever that bothers her personally, it has to be put aside because it does not matter and has no relation to her work. All she can do is gulp at a fresh air during break time or hide in staircase away from prying eyes.

Suk Yool's capability finally showed when the labor team at the site announced that they would rally. HIs arrogant Boss did not want to compromise but advanced on provoking the workers telling them that if they continue to boycott they would have to take full responsibility for whatever outcome ahead. Suk Yool knew these people. He had been one with them like family. Some old workers were so angry towards him for not understanding them. He felt ashamed of himself in a suit standing opposite them. He promised to look for sub contractors that will help so as not to put all the burden to their workers at the site. Their machine are old and it is risky to take all the orders. Some already lost fingers and hands. They too have families they have to protect and take care of. These worries, Suk Yool knows very well. His ability to find answers during crises was put to test and he got the chance to show what he knew best.

All three newbies are getting there, surviving through tough situations, except Baek Ki. There are still some parts about his story that needs to be highlighted. Maybe he is so focused in his own self that whatever he has to show yet is being shadowed by his worries being left behind.

So many insights that captured the heart each episode. All have to get through their own battle and stay strong to win against themselves and to people around them that continue to criticize. Geu Rae's story keeps me hooked.


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