...And then, commercial break! Which rocks of them, because I was so afraid it was just going to cut away to somebody else instead of doing that.
Much applause, and the Graystones are a teepee and a wigwam right now, and Sarno's like, "Nice to see you, Doctor!" Amanda explains that she's as surprised as they are that she has appeared in her usual way, but that they're getting it wrong. Sarno: "I'm getting this wrong? Okay, I just flashed back to my first and third marriages there..." But the look of horror Amanda shoots him finally, finally cracks through and he apologizes for the first time for making a joke, like he literally goes, "I'm sorry, I don't know why I made a joke." He is phenomenal some more. Amanda explains that Zoë wasn't "crazy," she was angry. You can feel that same power in the crowd -- they're not sure what she's talking about yet, and not inclined to listen seriously, but the less she stutters and the more Sarno stares at her, the more power she gets.
"She was defiant. She was rude. She was frustrating. Show me a 15-year-old girl who isn't. She slammed her door, she played loud music. She said that we embarrassed her in public..." (We've heard this before; it's going to take more than this but it's a good place for her to start.) Sarno jumps on it masterfully -- "Slammed her door? Played loud music? And blew up a commuter train!" -- but Amanda asks him to tell her the exact moment she should have called the cops. "I don't know, maybe when she started worshipping the Big Destructo-God in the sky?" Big laughs, big applause. (To paraphrase Pirsig: One person's delusion is insanity, but collective delusion is religion. I agree with him in the original context, but that's not the context here.)
They talk about how they didn't know anything that was going on with her, and Sarno reminds him he used the "troubled" word like twice, which causes Team Graystone to sigh loudly backstage, but Daniel finally shoots his wife a grateful, loving look. They have this way of holding hands when they're not even touching. "She was angry. It's a better word, my wife's right." Okay, but also morally blank, Sarno suggests, but the crowd's not following him there yet. "Because the virtual world is a poor teacher and doesn't teach you boundaries..."
Amanda stares at Daniel as he drops the first shoe that's going to save them: "You know who would completely agree with that is Zoë, and that's exactly how the STO got to her." Genius, and totally true. She was in a cult but she wasn't a terrorist yet; she was watching the rollercoaster head for the brink in a way that Sarno only pretends to fear. Sarno's completely wrongfooted this time, and tells Daniel to back up ("keep in mind half of this audience is stoned," big laugh).