The Jax Teller monologues are back! Come, let us thrill to the insights bubbling up inside the wine-dark mind of America's most sensitive biker:
"It's hard not to hate. People, things, institutions. They break your spirit and take pleasure in watching you bleed. Hate is the only thing that makes sense. But I know what hate does to a man: tears him apart, turns him into something he's not -- something he promised himself he'd never become. That's what I need to tell you: [I want] to let you know how hard I'm trying not to cave under the weight of all the awful things I feel in my heart. [During this we see Jax riding his bike alone at night, no "brothers" beside him.] Sometimes my life feels like a deadly balancing act, what I feel slamming up against what I should do. Impulsive reactions, racing to solutions, miles ahead of my brain [It is probably not a coincidence that this passage about acting before thinking was a VO on a scene of Gemma, having just bedded some anonymous woman, smoking a joint dazedly.] When I look at my day, I realize that most of it was spent cleaning up the damage of the day before. [And how appropriate that here we see Clay. Bee-tee-dubs, he's looking remarkably hale and healthy for a man who's not wearing his oxygen mask, and he's cleaning his impressive gun collection.] In that life, I have no future. All I have is distraction and remorse. [Hello, Tara! There you are!] I buried my best friend three days ago, and as cliché as this sounds, I left a part of me in that box -- a part I barely knew, a part I'll never see again. Every day is a new box, boys. You open it, you take a look at what's inside. You're the one who determines if it's a gift or a coffin."
So, is anyone else getting a bad feeling about whether or not Jax will be alive by the end of the series? Because so far, this season has underlined all the ways in which Jax is following in his dead dad's footsteps -- from the way he's leading the club to wearing his dad's wedding rings to writing his own manifesto about the perils of losing one's way.
ANYWAY. Jax has stopped writing because it's time to ruin his breakfast by taking it with Hale the Lesser. Jax, Bobby Elvis and Chibs ambush the mayor at his local greasy spoon. Hale opens with a casual mention of the home invasions he's sure have nothing to do with the town's friendly local biker gang. In reply, Jax manfully restrains himself from snickering at Hale's goatee or asking if this means he's dealing with Hale Prime from an alternate universe. Hale asks what Jax wants. Jax would like to lease the old Elks' Lodge for his escort service. Hale begins laughing: "You think I'm going to let you set up a prostitution ring in one of my properties?" Bobby Elvis drawls that it's very legit, as their partner has all the permits and licenses. Hale suggests that the Sons find another very legit property to rent. Jax says, "We like being in business with people we know." Hale blithely assures him that it's never going to happen, and that's when Jax lays down the plot for this week's caper: His exhaustive study of the minutes from the last six city council meetings have shown that the Charming Heights project is not only floundering, but also that Hale's in danger of losing all his land and having it revert back to agricultural use. There's a motion on the table that might permanently ice the project, and it depends on one swing vote. With the cheery demeanor of a car salesman, Jax says, "I know how important Charming Heights is to you, to this town. We're going to make your dream come true. I'll be in touch."