I'm a native Californian whose family has lived in the East Bay region for more than 100 years, spanning five generations. I've been though many phases in life, each building upon the last. Thus I'm familiar with many sides of the common social and political debates, from personal experience and through a wide variety of friends.
I began reading science fiction as a child, when I picked up my mother's paperbacks. Asimov, Clarke, Heinlein, Kornbluth and others brought me the wonders of the universe, even as I enjoyed Captain Kangaroo and Bonanza. Later I cleaned out the entire SF section at my local suburban library, and found friends who share this interest.
About ten years ago I began to write my favorite authors, and was gratified by the many informative responses. Then I got the "hey I could do this" bug, and launched a whole new career.