The last time I tried to pick someone up from San Jose airport from San Francisco (long story), it took **three hours**! San Jose is only an hour south of SF in the middle of the night. It is more like 2+, with half the country moving to whatever city on the peninsula is farthest from their job. I used to do contracts in San Jose, but no more. it takes too damned long.
Everything that used to be cool and funky or artistic is now a corporatized landrush -- 80K naked drunks peeing on lawns during Bay to Breakers, just for a start. And there really is a place with $4 toast.
And all the museums suck (except the exploratorium) and the best galleries just got shut down because a start up will pay lots more to rent the building.
The City has been expensive as long as I have been here (roughly 30 yrs), but there were always pockets of interest that weren't insane of busy being bid up by the ignorant.
Back in the day, the City ran on financial services firms, which were very conservative. There was something to be different from. Now, everyone is hip, slick, and cool and goes to work in jean or leggings and drinks too much on the job and is vegan (except on Thursday when the company serves grassfed beef.).
I miss my City, even the times it turned out people I thought I wanted to get to know were junkies.
Oh and it is beautiful and the air is clean and the food is very, very good. As is the tap water.