Man, it's hard even to get my thoughts in order for this one. Fittingly enough given the title, all season long, I was looking forward to this, the AB Chao episode, with excitement, and yet of course a small, irrational part of me was afraid it wouldn't be good and I'd have to say mean things about it and I'd never, ever be invited to Chao Camp again. I'm sure AB's thought process about seeing it air was similar, if you substitute "L.A." for "Chao Camp." Anyway, I've got to get on with it, but when we talked on the phone a couple of weeks ago, she told me in no uncertain terms that I'd better give her an A. I hope she can forgive my disobedience.
Oh, one other thing: I know AB co-wrote the episode, and I hope Oscar Balderrama doesn't hate me for this, but since I haven't played Celebrity or watched Honey with him or sung along to The O.C. theme song in his car yet, I'm going to gush over AB just a little more. Still, Oscar: awesome job!
Eli's watching some fish in a large tank, which just so happens to contain a plastic replica of the Golden Gate Bridge. Good thing the fish are too dumb to pick up on the foreshadowing -- they might as well enjoy the time they have left before they end up asphyxiating on the carpet. Eli's surgeon enters, as it's his office, and tells Eli that his pre-op exam looks promising. Eli sits, and this is where if I'm him, I drop this guy as my doctor right now. I don't care how highly recommended he is -- a surgeon who can't afford chairs made of something more tasteful than wicker is no one I'm going to let poke around in my brain. The doctor mentions his test result in some more detail and says they're all set, and Eli breathes, "To take out the aneurysm." The doc tells him he thought Eli was up for gallbladder surgery, and behind Eli, the fish roll their eyes all, "He tells that one every time. At least mix things up and say 'spleen' once in a while!" The doc notices that Eli seems nervous, like, no kidding, and tells him that given the risks, he recommends that Eli get his affairs in order -- specifically, he should draft a living will, so they'll know what to do should the surgery render him a vegetable. "I'm sure you know a few good lawyers." Given Eli's vocation, said document will probably contain instructions for suing the pants off Dr. Giggles here.
Eli hops in a cab to go downtown and busies himself with his phone, so he doesn't notice when he seamlessly gets thrown into a vision. He's still in a cab, but the driver is a much younger guy, and, as he tells someone named "Macaroni" via the phone in his hand, they're on the Golden Gate Bridge. This wakes Eli up, and after he unsuccessfully tries to get the driver's attention, he realizes he's left reality. I had a joke all ready about the driver's failure to use a hands-free headset being the cause of the impending disaster, but he hangs up well before it happens. Well, anyone who called his girlfriend "Macaroni" was someone I was likely to hate. The radio announcer tells us it's 5: 13 PM on Thursday the 24th, and Eli mutters that it's actually the 21st, but that's all the griping he has time for as, in a well-done effects sequence, an earthquake hits and the bridge starts to sway. One of the cables comes loose and snaps right into the car's windshield...