I heard about MetaFilter from a friend, who was a very early reader of the site. He would send me links to the site, and tell me to sign up. I eventually did, several years later. That's how it goes for most things he tells me about. (For whatever reason he never signed up back when signups were open, and to this day still doesn't have an account. )
Gay Jesus Offends Christians
MetaFilter was (and remains) a place I go to find cool links to stuff and hopefully read a good flame out. Flameouts were my favourite part of this site. It remained this way for many years.
Then one day back in 2009 I got a message from gman, completely out of the blue, asking me if I was going to the Toronto Meetup. (Jessamyn would be there!) I said I'd come, sure. I like going to bars as much as the next person. I didn't really know why a bunch of people who read the same website would want to hang out. I figured I could leave early if it was empty or boring.
To quote myself the following day, "I had a fucking crazy headache which ended about an hour ago. That was a fun night, even if I don't remember a good chunk of it now."