As it turns out, there are actually four main things that determine where I want to live, not three as I'd thought: job proximity, friends proximity, culture/nightlife proximity, and weather. I hadn't realized the last one was as important to me as it is - but after finally noticing that my mood markedly improves when it's sunny and warm (i.e. over 70), I guess it matters more than I thought. Alas, this is yet another thing in the South Bay's favor; up here at the Oakland/Berkeley border it's been rather cloudier, cooler, and damper than I prefer.
I was hoping to find a job before getting an apartment of my own, but external factors and the inability to really nest here are conspiring against me.