How I found the place is lost to the ravages of time at this point, though I might have followed a link from either the Mac News Network lounge, or Apple Insider, but it seemed like it was down half the time, and I never caught on to the five-minute noon wondow thing, so I had to have lurked for the better part of two years before the $5 n00b policy went into effect. I didn't even know there was such a policy until one of my random clicks on the register link actually did sometihing. I'm persistent, if a bit clueless.
Hugs and shirts
I've got a ton of great memories from the site, and of the three or four meet ups I've been to, although I always bail form the meet ups early, but there are a couple things that stand out, like getting an IRL hug from jessamyn right after ending a 6-month MetaFilter hiatus that was brought on by a really shitty family-time period. It was kind of a welcome back to life moment. That, and when Matt spontaneously donated the t-shirt profits From the 10th anniversary shirts I printed to a member in need - I was pretty happy to have been able to make a positive difference, even orthogonally, in someone's life through involvement with the site. Also, seeing pics of members and mods wearing their shirts is always really cool for me.