For the uninitiated, every midsummer for the last couple of years, the gang have set out on a trip to a southern island.
But this year, the old tradition seems set to break. Many in the gang now have girlfriends pinning them down, and as for me, well... I'm sure it would be fun, but with such a heavily decimated group, it feels like going into war with only half an army. (Sort of. Good analogies fail me right now.) Not to mention that I'd rather save the money I'd potentially spend for a future, longer trip.
He also suggested that in order to round up money I would sit in the street with a hat in front of me and speak Japanese, and presumably people would then donate for this noble cause.
The re-ignited interest didn't come by itself this time, but was a direct result of reading the 10K Commotion, a webcomic centered around a DDR-tournament. Highly recommended, even if you're not initiated in the sport. Since webcomics span a lot of different styles, I should specify and say that this is a very manga-influenced comic, and has a lot more substance than the "just-for-laughs" ones, with much focus on the relations developing between various characters.