In the Other Place, the Other Country, before they took a decision to allow everyone an avatar when they joined the forum, they used to have a system whereby one couldn't upload an avatar until one had posted - I think it was 500 posts (whereas PRSI required 100 posts before one could obtain access, while access to the Marketplace was granted once one had amassed 250 posts and been a member for six months).
I seem to recall that quite a number of people became quite agitated as they approached 500 posts, and found themselves unable to upload avatars immediately to announce this fact, something that, at the time, I thought a extraordinarily disproportionate expenditure of emotion.
Actually, I also seem to recall that some threads were started which loudly complained about the delay in recognition of the poster's new status, and thus, allowing them to upload a carefully chosen avatar, as the system didn't seem to immediately register their change in status, invariably and inevitably followed by fulsome apologies on the part of mods, as remedial action was taken.
Anyway, MR was the first online community I had ever joined, and the whole thing was new to me. At the time, given the fuss around this topic in MR, I even recall having to look up the noun "avatar" as I hadn't a clue what it meant, or why it was so important to some people.
When I reached the number of 500 posts, I remained avatar-less for quite some time, as it didn't really bother me, and I had no idea whatsoever what one should do, or why one should want to do it.
Moreover the whole field of digital photography was (and is) completely unfamiliar to me, as I still shoot (that is, when I still shoot) with film.
Eventually, given that I was (and still am) active on the coffee forum, - and I do love my coffee - I liked one of the avatars used by SBG, and asked him whether I could use it when he no longer felt a need for it, and he arranged for me to use (and uploaded it for me) the avatar I use here, a nicely shot image of a cup of coffee.