This is a pic (rotated) of the right top corner of the TB and idle control (gold). You can see the idle control is hollow in this pic..
After I re-inserted the found piece, it looked normal-- in this pic..
On the left of the below pic is the piece I found on my radiator cover. After I re-inserted it into the idle control and then removed it, it pulled out (with it) the silver piece on the right. Maybe this is the issue????
Those two pieces fit together as such..
at this point, both small parts are out of the car.. I disconnected the CAI and found the TB (with engine off) spring loaded closed, which I expected. When I pushed it open, it returned to closed. I checked all electrical connections and everything looks good.. Is this the point at which I dis-assemble the (right) side of the TB and find out what the hell is up with these two random idle control pieces?? Anybody seen this?