One of our friends organized an informal charity event. We went to a tabehoudai yakiniku restaurant (all-you-can-eat grilled meat for a flat rate within a specific time period), and for every pitcher of beer that was consumed by the group, each person pledged to contribute ¥100 ($.81 USD at the current exchange rate). A couple people within the group went one step further and agreed to match what was raised at dinner. Then the company one guy works for is set to match the entire amount from the evening. The next day, all proceeds were wired to the Japanese Red Cross.
Yakiniku = grill it yourself
As you might expect, most of what was grilled was meat, but there were a few grillable veggies and several cold non-meat dishes. Like kimchi! I didn't eat much kimchi in the US, but I'm definitely gaining an appreciation for it.
The long thin slices of meat are tongue. Yuck, but good on them for using all the parts.
This corn salad was excellent.
I can assure you that there is no real food shortage in Tokyo.
When you see how much beer was ultimately consumed, you'll appreciate the look on this guy's face a little more.
At one point I tried to get some hydration by ordering an oolong tea, but somehow I ended up with something half oolong tea and half sochu (one of those less delicious liquors unless paired with the right mixer). Not exactly what I was looking for, but I'm sure it's my fault because I don't speak very well yet.
We reached the 2-hour time limit having decimated a truly impressive amount of food. Overall, this was a success.
Here's a picture of the beer tally nearing the end of the night:
And the grand total:
All together, we raised ¥252,000 ($3,000 USD). Woot!