Actually, no. I lurked for the first 8 years sporadically. Initially it was very NYC oriented with not much about cooking or the rest of the country. Thread formation was very awkward to follow since I did not have a computer of my own.
I became involved with DOTM organization when the person handling it went awol due to some extreme personal issues. The person who had originated the idea was in the midst of planning a wedding and not on line much. When the nomination thread didn’t appear as it should have I started one. Did that a couple of times, fortunately no one felt I was stepping on their toes, and I became part of the organizer group by default.
After the fiasco that led to HO I started trying to remove myself from the responsibility. Took a while until there were enough other people willing to do it. Now I lurk and participate once in a while.
It was wonderful in the glory days! I met some great folks, learned of amazing restaurants and resources and my cooking skills and repertoire improved faster than ever before.
I’m not willing to provide free content for the corporate ownership of CH for many reasons. But I do hope that the archives of those glory years remains accessible for a long, long time!