I have just read your essay Dead Man Shopping. Your writing simply dazzles. I wish you could enjoy the temperate climes of California. I wonder why certain writers, like Joan Didion and John Steinbeck, ever left this state for New York. To me their talent remained here. The provincial is perhaps the most critical of his own character, like the reformed smoker.
Twenty years ago I lived in Northern California, the Eureka area, which was branded by the twin male occupations of logging and fishing. A third dynamic was taking hold, the male occupation of pot growing. Fishermen may carry guns, loggers probably not, pot growers always.