Fade back up on Carmela in the confessional. Much to Sars's dismay, she's speaking to a different priest than Father Intintoola (tm Sars, and maybe that will cheer her up). Not that it matters in the context of the episode, but the new priest is black, and apparently Carmela was referred to him by Father Tool Time because he's getting his doctorate in psychiatry from Seton Hall. "Psychology," corrects Father Notintola, and Carmela sobs and admits that The Tool told her that "[her] whole life is a lie." And now she's afraid that she's sick, and that she won't get to go to heaven. Despite the fact that she hasn't seen a doctor, Carm is convinced that she's got ovarian cancer. She lists her symptoms, and despite (or perhaps because of) my stated ignorance of all things gynecological, I think that sounds more like menopause than cancer. The new priest reminds her that "God doesn't punish people for the mistakes that they've made," and then mentions that he thinks her symptoms could mean that she's pregnant. "That's another possibility," admits Carmela, and they're both silent for a moment. The priest suggests adjourning to his office, and they do. Carmela now repeats her psychiatrist's advice to leave Tony, but of course, the Church doesn't approve of divorce. "My life is financed by crime," she says. "The psychiatrist called it blood money." I think this new priest might be a bit of a Buddhist, because he replies with the wise koan that "God understands that we all live in the middle of tensions." He encourages her to live only on what "the good part" of her husband earns (yeah, right). Then he basically tells her to just ignore the problem by not "crossing the boundaries" that make her feel uncomfortable. Carmela thinks for a moment, and then decides that that's something she can do. It's worth mentioning here that she's now got the ring completely covered up with her left hand. "Oh, and go see an OB/GYN," is the priest's final bit of advice. Maybe I should take it.
Das Sopranohaus. Tony and Carmela are in the kitchen eating breakfast, and ladies and gentlemen, we have robe. StR = 1,710. After the StTM adjustment, and an award of one hundred additional bonus points for pulling off the tricky robe trifecta of Tony, Gloria, and Joey Pants, the episode earns itself a solid A grade. Nice work, Dave. Anyway, Carmela talks about the British government's Mad Cow disease cover-up, and Tony responds with what is rapidly becoming the second half of the season's shorthand for "What are you gonna do?" -- the corny joke. This time it's "Maybe they didn't want to start a stampede." Carmela gleefully tells him that Meadow and Jackie Jr. have broken up, only she refers to them as "a former medical student" and "the Queen of Mean." Heh. Tony is thrilled to hear it. Carmela goes gossipy, and relates that she heard from Angie "Oh God Don't Make Me Spell It Again" Bonpensiero that Jackie Jr. has been smoking pot and cheating at Rutgers. "She would have been better off with that black kid," opines Carmela, and this time, Tony is noticeably more restrained in his disagreement. The phone rings, and it just so happens to be Gloria, calling from the dealership. She doesn't appear to be drunk, but I guess she's nonetheless not quite as "independent-minded" as Tony seems to think. Gloria delights in offering Carmela an opportunity on a new car, and makes sure to tell her to "mention it to [her] husband. Maybe he'll want to treat you." Carmela politely declines and hangs up before turning to Tony and saying, "What a nice woman." When Tony hears that it was a saleslady from Globe Motors, he suddenly stops chomping his Honey Combs, and demands to know how they met. Tony listens to the story of the ride home Carmela got, all the while pondering the potential consequences. When she's done with her tale, he suddenly hops up and walks straight out of the room.