The new hard drive is ready to go in my Macbook Pro.
Closed her up. I booted from my Leopard startup disk, erased the new drive, and ran an install from a backup on my Time Machine drive.
It works like a champ. I am using it now. Little is more satisfying then geeking your own hardware (and yes, this was elementary, or pre-school in terms of difficulty).
And to follow up on the philosophical bag of gold left me by Stephen Downes, why is she alive? BECAUSE I FREAKIN FIXED HER.