thanks for the shout-out, BFE!
I definitely recommend following tags first, then curating your followed users afterwards as you see who is posting quality content in your tags.
Sorting Chatter by time is basically like a comment hose, where you can see what's going down where. Sorting Global by time gives you the same thing for posts. I think @hubskihose on twitter also accomplishes that same goal. So if you're ever on the look out for new stuff, or curious about who's up to what, then those are good places to start.