Harold, a belated welcome to you. You've been here about as long as I have. You lurk , I participate. I'm sure you know the characters around here as well as anyone. Once you 'know' someone, what would be the harm if you posted once in a while? You should pretty much know what type(s) of reply to expect. If that scares you away, then I guess you've answered your own question.
Participating, for me, is simply a way of belonging to group. I taught school for 33 years and always worked with a tight-knit group of characters. This is kind of like that for me now. I enjoy reading most of the posts and hate it when some of us get a little too full of ourselves or act like possessive little kids. But most of the time it's just a good time with friends.
I've only met one SZ member personally, Tony Rome, but I feel I could easily meet most SZ members and feel at home immediately because of the unique bond this group possesses.