Max pulls out his phone. Nick: "Again with the phone thing?" Max: "Yup."

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  • The main character, who I’ve arbitrarily named Max, is sitting and playing video games with his equally randomly named friend Nick. They’re eating junk food. His phone beeps.

  • Max pulls out his phone. Nick: “Again with the phone thing?” Max: “Yup.”

  • Zoom in on the phone. Caption: The CITYPHONE! A cell phone app designed to help people lose weight.

  • Nick: “Man, Max, I can’t believe you’ve been using that app for a whole year. That’s dedication.” Max: “Well, using the app is one thing, actually dieting is another…” Max reaches into a bag of chips.


  • The phone: *BEEP* Please input food. Max is walking.

  • *BEEP* Please input food. Max is reading.

  • *BEEP* Please input food. Max is watering a plant.

  • *BEEP* Please--- Max, sitting on the toilet: “SHUT UP!”


  • Max is eating. “Broccoli, lettuce, carrots, salad…”

  • “I’m eating… so… so healthy.” He says this, but looks a little annoyed.

  • He looks to the side of him, where there’s a box of cookies.

  • “You only live once, right?!” He digs into the cookies.


  • Max is walking on a treadmill, looking pleased with himself.

  • He steps off. “20 minutes of walking… I’d say that’s a solid workout!”

  • He’s at home. “Well, I exercised today… time to treat myself!” He gets some ice cream.

  • He’s later standing on the scale. “Why isn’t this diet working?”


  • Max is with Nick when his phone beeps.

  • Max: “ARGH! Dude, Nick, I am so sick of this phone!” Nick: “At least it’s helping you lose weight, right?”

  • Max: “Not really! I’ve barely lost any weight!” Nick, in surprise: “But you’ve been sticking to your diet and everything, though!”

  • Max: “Well…” He looks comically embarrassed.


  • Max is exercising hard.

  • Max is eating healthy.

  • Max, later, in bed. “Man, I worked hard today!”

  • Max, thinking: “So I only have to do this again tomorrow… and the day after that… and the day after that… and…” His spirits look a little dampened.


  • Max is sitting with his head on the table, staring at his phone. Thinking: “This darn phone… I’m so tired of it…”

  • “I heard there were supposed to be changes in it starting the second year, but I don’t know!”

  • He glares at his phone.

  • He says out loud, “How did I even start with you, annoying phone?”


  • One year ago. Nick: “What’s that you got there?” Max is fiddling with his phone.

  • Max: “A cityphone! It’s supposed to help me lose weight!”

  • “...”

  • Nick: “How does a phone help you lose weight?” Main character: “I’m not sure, but the phone is cool.”


  • One year ago. Max: “I’m so ready for this cityphone thing! Time to exercise!”

  • He’s jogging on a treadmill.

  • Now he’s slowing down, walking, obviously tired.

  • He’s barely hanging onto the treadmill, exhausted. Nick appears beside him. “How long has it been since you exercised?” Max: “*Gasp* I dunno… *gasp* 5th grade gym class?”


  • One year ago. Max, talking excitedly to Nick: “…so this cityphone thing is gonna help me lose weight! Can you imagine?”

  • Nick: “Considering I’ve known you since grade school, no, I can’t.” Max: “Well, non-believer…”

  • Max: “This is it! This app is gonna do it! I’ll be a changed man!”

  • Nick: “A changed man with a bag of chips?” Zoom out, showing Max eating from a bag of chips. Max looks indignant. “These are low-sodium.”


  • One year ago. Max, talking to Nick: “I’m trying to have a more balanced diet. You know, get my carbs, my fiber, my protein…”

  • Nick: “So how’s that going?” Max: “Great! I thought a diet meant eating gross, bland food, but I was wrong!”

  • Nick: “Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but…”

  • Nick: “…hot dogs are not a healthy source of protein.” Max, who’s eating a hot dog, looks surprised. “It’s not?! But the street vendor guy said…”


  • One year ago. Nick walks over to Max, who is eating. Nick: “Carrots? Salmon? Brown rice? You are legit about this diet, huh?”

  • Max: “I said I was, right? I’m going to lose weight and change my life!”

  • Nick: “I guess I’m just not used to you taking something so seriously.”

  • Max: “You think I’m not serious, huh?! I accept your challenge!” He stands on the table pointing down at Nick, ready for a fight. Nick: “There’s a reason I think that…”


  • One year ago. Max is talking to Nick: “What, so you don’t think I’m actually going through with this cityphone thing?”

  • Nick: “Well, it’s not that I don’t believe in you, it’s just that in the past…”

  • A quick picture of Max’s past. “Karate: 2 months. Soccer: 52 days. Baseball: 3 weeks. Wrestling: 15 minutes.”

  • Nick: “…you’ve never been very patient.” Max: “Patience? Who needs it?! I’ll be losing weight in no time!”


  • One year ago. Max and Nick are sitting on a couch playing video games. Max: “You know, Nick…”

  • Max: “I really am serious about this cityphone, you know. I’m going to lose weight. I really, really, want to.”

  • Nick grins, but is serious. “Does that mean less video games for you?”

  • Max: “No, it means we’re playing Dance Dance Revolution.” He pulls out a dance mat. Nick: “WHAT NO!”


  • The present day. We’re back to Max where we left off, with him staring at his phone on the table. “You dumb phone…”

  • He keeps staring. “I’ve barely lost any weight… what are you good for, anyway?”

  • The phone beeps. Max: “Ah!...” He freaks out that the phone responded.

  • Max checks the phone screen. Phone: “Good morning! It’s time for some exercise!” It’s excessively bright and cheerful. Max: “You dumb piece of—“


  • The present day. Max is eating a burger when his phone beeps.

  • He checks his phone, which says, “-prompt- please enter food consumption for today.”

  • Max looks over at his huge tray of food.

  • He types into his phone, “Just a salad.”


  • The present day. Max is exercising hard.

  • He’s cooking and concentrating, looking at a cookbook.

  • He’s looking down at a scale, surprised.

  • He shakes his fist at the air. “WEIGHT…Y U NO CHANGE?”


  • The present day. Max is sitting at a bar, looking comically sad and drinking a bottle of water.

  • He drinks some water. Nick walks up to him.

  • Nick: “So, how’s the cityphone thing going—“

  • Max just turns and faces him, comically crying. Nick: “…not so good, huh.”


  • Max and Nick are sitting at the bar. Max: “I just don’t know, Nick! I’ve been exercising, and eating right, but still…”

  • Nick: “Really? What about that burrito you got there?” He points to Max’s hand, which holds a burrito.

  • Max looks at the burrito.

  • Max: “There’s food for the body, and there’s food for the soul.” Nick rolls his eyes. “Fair enough.”


  • Max and Nick are still sitting at the bar. “When I started this cityphone thing, I just thought, you know…”

  • Max: “…” Nick: “Thought what?”

  • Max: “That it would be easier! Like, yeah, I have to exercise, and eat better, but why is it still so hard?”

  • Nick drinks from his cup. “Well, the fight is what makes it worth it, right?” Max: “That’s what my baseball coach said every time we lost.”


  • Max and Nick are still sitting at the bar. Nick: “Listen, man, you can’t give up. How long you got left with the phone?”

  • Max: “Another year still. But, I wasted the whole first year…”

  • Nick: “C’mon, man. Think of that first year as a trial run. A game demo. Just testing the waters before you buy into the whole thing.”

  • Max: “Yeah, except I’d always play the demo but never buy the game.” Nick: “…Well, this time will be different.”


  • One year ago. Max is looking at his phone, with Nick next to him. “So I’m supposed to be looking out for portion size…”

  • Max: “What does that mean, anyway?” Nick looks over at the phone.

  • Nick reads the phone. “Well, for starters…”

  • Nick points to Max’s plate, which has a huge steak on it. “You should only be eating about 1/5 of that steak.” Max: “What?! But this is a normal-sized steak!”


  • One year ago. Max, looking at a Pop-Tart label: “Aw, Pop-Tarts aren’t that bad. Only 210 calories…”

  • “For, uh, only one pastry. So that’s 420 calories total. And 14 grams of fat.”

  • “…”

  • “I feel deceived.”


  • One year ago. Max is eating at a restaurant, when he suddenly remembers something.

  • He says to a waiter: “Hey, do you mind if I see the nutrition information?” Waiter: “No problem, sir, I’ll get it in a moment.”

  • Max looks at the information. “Let’s see… BBQ Chicken Wrap… that’s only…”

  • “…my daily fat intake for the next four days.”


  • One year ago. Max is about to eat a huge piece of chicken.

  • He suddenly thinks, “Oh yeah! Portion size!”

  • He reaches into his pocket.

  • Max, holding up a deck of cards next to his plate: “Does this chicken look like a deck of cards to you?” Friend: “What are you talking about?”


  • One year ago. Max is in a restaurant. The waiter comes up and places a plate on the table. “Your chicken Caesar salad, sir.”

  • A close up of the salad, diagramming the parts of the salad. CROUTONS: 150 calories. PARMESAN CHEESE: 230 calories. CRISPY CHICKEN: 440 calories. SOUR CREAM AND CAESAR DRESSING: 560 calories

  • TOTAL: 1380 calories

  • Max: “Wait, I thought salads were supposed to be healthy…”


  • One year ago. Max: “Fruit’s good for you, right?” He has a huge pile of fruit in front of him.

  • Nick: “Yeah, of course. Wait, are you eating all of that?”

  • Max: “No no no, I’m just trying to come up with the right portion size…”

  • Max: “…does this apple look like a baseball to you?” He holds up both. Nick: (in confusion) “Only if you find sports equipment appetizing…”


  • One year ago. Max: “Yogurt’s supposed to be good for you, right?”

  • Max: “I mean, I was told to get plain yogurt, but a flavored one can’t be too much worse, right?” He starts to eat the yogurt.

  • The spoon is in his mouth when he stops and sees the nutrition label.

  • What do you mean, 25 grams of sugar?!” He comically throws the cup on the ground.


  • One year ago. Max is rocking out to Guitar Hero. “WELL, I COULD SEE”

  • He’s rocking out some more. “YOU HOME WITH MEEEE~”

  • As he’s rocking out, Nick walks over. “BUT YOU WERE WITH ANOTHER MANNNN, YEAHHHHH~” Nick: “Ooh, Guitar Hero! Can I join?” Max: “No way! This is my daily exercise!” Friend: “…What?”

  • Earlier. Max is looking at his cityphone. “Your daily workout can consist of all sorts of activities! Like walking, running, biking, dancing…” Max: “Hmm…”


  • One year ago. Nick: “I’m not sure if Guitar Hero counts as exercise.” Max: “No?”

  • Max: “But it gets my heart pounding!” Nick: “Well, yeah, but still…”

  • Max: “It’s okay. Don’t worry. I will revise my strategy.”

  • Max, singing: “ALLLL BYYY MYYYSELLLLFFF” Nick, holding his ears: “I don’t think Karaoke Revolution counts either!”


  • One year ago. Nick walks up to Max, who is standing up while on his computer. Nick: “Uh, is there a reason you’re standing up while working?”

  • Max: “Oh, yeah. Standing burns more calories than sitting, right?” Nick: “I guess…”

  • Max: “So if I stand instead of sit all day, I’ll be able to skip the gym later!”

  • Nick: “I don’t think it works that way.”


  • Max looks out the window and sees a neighbor mowing the grass with a push mower.

  • Max: “Mowing grass! Mowing grass is exercise, right?”

  • Nick: “Well, yeah, I guess if you’re walking back and forth, then…” Max: “Great!”

  • Max is mowing the lawn, except he’s on one of those drivable mowers. Nick: “I’m starting to think you really don’t get it.”


  • Nick walks into the Max’s house. “What the…”

  • Nick: “Yo, it’s sweltering in here!” Max: “Yeah! I’m trying to simulate sauna conditions!” Max is sweating like crazy.

  • Max: “I heard being in a sauna burns calories and helps you lose weight!” Nick: “Really now?”

  • Nick: “Because I think the only weight you’re losing is from dehydration.” Main character: “So… hot…”


  • Max’s phone beeps. “Please input activity for the day.”

  • Max types into his phone.

  • Max: “Hey!” He looks indignant.

  • Max, later, to Nick: “Can you believe it?! Apparently doing the dishes doesn’t count as exercise!” Nick: “That’s because it isn’t.”


  • Max, to Nick: “My phone says I need to start a regular exercise plan.” Nick: “Why don’t you, then?”

  • Max: “Well, I’m not really sure where to start…” Nick: “Easy! Even right now you could just go out and go jogging…”

  • They both look out the window. It’s snowing like crazy.

  • Nick: “…on a treadmill.” Max: “Does this mean I have to join a gym?”


  • Max is at the gym. “Okay! Got my gym membership-- Time to work out!”

  • He looks to the side. There’s an extremely fit girl running on a treadmill.

  • He looks to the other side. There’s an extremely muscular man benching weights.

  • Max is at home. Nick: “I thought you were at the gym.” Main character: “I was intimidated.”


  • Max and Nick are walking towards the gym. Friend: “Listen, there’s tons of people like you at the gym just trying to lose weight. Not all of them are crazy fit.” Max: “That’s true…”

  • They keep walking. Max starts to cower as they get closer.

  • They walk more. Max is blatantly ducking behind Nick.

  • They reach the door. Max is hiding completely behind his friend. Nick: “What are you…” Max: “Shut up I’m still scared”


  • Max: “I need to overcome this fear and start exercising.”

  • Max: “Maybe having an exercise buddy will get me into the gym.”

  • Max, to Nick: “Nick! Be my exercise buddy!” Nick: “What? Okay, I can try…”

  • They’re in front of the gym again. Nick is pushing as hard as he can on Max, who is adamantly resisting going into the gym. Nick: “I can’t be your exercise buddy if I’m the only one getting exercise!”


  • Nick: “You know, there are other ways to exercise besides the gym.”

  • Max: “I know, but I shouldn’t let myself feel so down every time I see a person in shape.”

  • Max: “I need to go in there and confront my fear!”

  • Later. Max is sitting with his friend in exercise clothes, a little down. “I got past the doorway this time.” Nick: “It’s all about the steady improvement.”


  • Nick glances over at Max, who is looking down and playing video games. Nick, thinking: “Man, Max seems so down about being afraid of the gym. If only I could help him somehow…”

  • Still thinking: “If only there was something that would motivate him enough to overcome his fear, it would work…”

  • Nick comes to a sudden realization.

  • Nick: (grinning like a maniac) “Hey! Do I have the surprise for you!...” Max: “What is that smile? I don’t like that smile.”


  • Max: “Okay, so Nick said that he set me up on a romantic walk with a girl. I just have to go to this address.”

  • He looks up. “Wait… this is the address… of the gym!”

  • From the side, someone says: “Hey, you must be Nick’s friend! Max, right?” The main character looks in the direction of the voice, surprised.

  • There’s a girl dressed in hardcore workout clothes. She says, “I’m Alice, your athletic trainer. Ready for a workout?” The main character looks comically frightened.


  • A door slams to the side. Nick: “Hey, how was your romantic walk?”

  • Max walks in, completely exhausted and harassed and irritated. “Romantic walk? More like running with your little athletic trainer! You jerk!”

  • Nick: “But hey, you got into the gym, right? And you got to hang out with a hot chick, right?

  • Max: “Yeah, yeah. Just let me be mad for a while.” Nick: “I am the greatest friend ever.”


  • Max, who has just finished exercising, is walking with Nick. “Man, I never thought exercise would feel so nice!”

  • Max: “Hah, now I’ll be losing weight in no time!” He reaches into his pocket.

  • He unwraps a giant candy bar. Nick looks surprised.

  • Nick: “You know it’s called diet and exercise, right?” Max: “Oh, please. I can just burn it off later!” Nick: “With a flamethrower, maybe.”


  • Max is sitting and eating, a lot. Nick: “What happened to your calorie-counting diet?”

  • Max: “Oh, please. I exercise now! It’s no problem!”

  • Nick: “…” He stares skeptically at Max, who’s looking pleased with himself.

  • Nick: “That’s it. I’m setting you up on another romantic date.” Max reacts with surprise. “WAIT WHAT”


  • Max is meeting with Alice, looking nervous. Alice: “Hey, what’re you looking so scared for?...”

  • Alice: “Here, as a show of my goodwill, eat this!” She tosses him a bag of cookies. Max looks surprised. “What? Well, gladly…”

  • Max eats the bag of cookies.

  • Alice pulls out a stopwatch. “Okay, now we’re going to see how long it takes you to burn those cookies off.” Max reacts in shock, nearly spits cookies out.


  • Max is sweating and panting. “A whole hour and I barely burned off that little pack of cookies!” Alice: “Yeah, sadly, that’s how it usually goes.”

  • Alice: “Losing weight is a two-way deal. You gotta exercise, yeah, but you also gotta eat less! Eat healthy!” Max: “I see…”

  • Max: “But I’ve never learned how to cook! I’m all fast food and processed dinners.” Alice: “Really? I love cooking! Do you want me to help you?”

  • Later: Max runs into the house, triumphantly lording over Nick: “Ha! I don’t need your help to set up a hot date!” Nick: “Should I even ask?...”


  • Max, Alice, and Nick are at a kitchen stove. Max, to Alice: “I didn’t know you and Nick were friends from college, Alice.”

  • Alice: “Yeah, but it’s been a while! I was pretty surprised when he called me about you!” Max: “Really? What was he like in college?”

  • Alice: “Well, Nick was kind of… geeky. Actually, I remember during one chem lab he accidentally spilled hydrochloric acid on—“ Nick reacts in shock/fear, accidentally squirts a huge amount of oil onto the pan.



  • Pictures of some of dishes. “Roasted salmon… stir-fried green beans…”

  • “Chicken and vegetable soup… brown rice… and a fruit salad for dessert!”

  • Alice turns to Max and Nick. The three are cooking at the stove. Alice: “How’s that for a dinner?”

  • Max and Nick are staring in awe at the dishes. Max: “It’s so… so exotic!” Nick: “The only thing that’s ever on this stove is bacon and instant ramen.”


  • Alice, at the gym with Max: “Hey, how’s your cooking coming?”

  • Max: “Great! I think I’m really starting to eat more fruits and veggies!” Alice: “Really? That’s great!”

  • Alice: “…Can I come over to eat sometime, then?” Max: “YES”

  • Alice, Nick, and Max eating at a table. Alice: “I hate to tell you, but chocolate-covered strawberries and deep-fried onions aren’t exactly the healthiest things.” Nick: “The tastiest things, though!”


  • Alice, Max, and Nick are in the grocery store. Alice: “What do you guys buy when you go grocery shopping?”

  • Nick: “Well, you know, cereal, chips, cookies, crackers…” Max nods. Alice: “WRONG!”

  • Alice: “Alright, I got it. For today, you are not allowed to go in…”

  • Alice: “…the FORBIDDEN ZONE.” She points towards the middle of the grocery store. Max and Nick look confused.


  • Max: “The ‘Forbidden Zone,’ you called it?” Alice: “Yup…”

  • Alice: “In a grocery store, the healthy produce is usually located around the perimeter of the store. Dairy, fruits, veggies, meat, the works!”

  • Alice: “But the middle sections have a lot of processed food! You know, the stuff that you always want to buy but isn’t good for you!”

  • She looks up from her speech. Max and Nick are gone. “Which means… huh?” “Uh-oh.”


  • Max and Nick are in a grocery store aisle, pulling out food from the shelves. Nick: “Check this out, man! Discount habanero death chips!”

  • Max: “Throw it in with my triple-decker cookies. That’ll be a fun night.” Nick: “Aw yeah, you know it.”

  • They hear a voice behind them. “WHAT…ARE…YOU…DOING?”

  • They turn around in complete fear. Alice is towering over them, looking furious.


  • Alice is dragging Max and Nick out of the snack-food aisle. “Listen, kids, do you want to shop healthy or not?”

  • Max: “But, but half-off cheese puffs!” Nick: “Those donuts were begging to be eaten, let me tell you!” Alice rolls her eyes.

  • Alice: “What are you, a five-year-old?” She glares at them. Nick, jauntily: “No, actually, but I’ve been told to have the maturity of one.”

  • Alice glares at them in a frightening way. Max: “Thanks, Nick. You’ve just sentenced us to death.” Nick: “Why don’t I think these things through?...”


  • Nick, Alice, and Max are in the veggie section choosing vegetables. Alice: “So, what vegetables do you guys like to eat?”

  • Nick: “Well, I’m really into those veggie chips…” Max: “Carrot cake, that’s for sure.”

  • Nick: “And I really like those cheese and spinach dips…” Max: “Ketchup is made of tomatoes, right?”

  • Max: “Potatoes are vegetables, right?” Nick: “They grow in the ground…” Alice sighs. “I have a long way to go…”


  • Nick, Alice, and Max are at the butchery section. Max: “Meat, too?” Alice: “Of course! You need your daily dose of protein with everything else, of course.”

  • Alice: “So which one do you—“ Nick: “Steak.” Max: “Red steak.”

  • Nick: “Steak so red it bleeds on my plate.” Max: “Steak so rare that it still moos.”

  • Nick: “Raw cow I caught with my bare hands!” Max: “Oh yeah?! Then…” Alice: “WE’RE GETTING CHICKEN.”


  • Nick, Alice, and Max are in the fruit section choosing fruit.

  • They’re ordering meat from the butcher section.

  • They’re picking up some milk, checking the labels.

  • They’re at the register buying their choices. Max, looking at their foods: “This is the first time I’ve shopped so… so healthy!” Nick: “This is the first time I haven’t bought Pop-Tarts here! It’s bothering me…” Alice just nods, proud of herself.


  • Max comes home from work. “Man, I’m starving! Time for dinner…” He pulls out a frozen dinner from the freezer.

  • Suddenly, on his shoulder, a little vision of his phone with angel wings (you know, they whole angel/devil thing) appears. The phone says: “Don’t forget to incorporate vegetables into your diet!”

  • Max looks at his dinner.

  • Nick walks in on Max eating. “A frozen dinner of fried chicken, and… green beans?” Max: “It’s a start, alright?”


  • Max is in the kitchen. “So, to stir-fry vegetables, I first add oil to the pan…”

  • “One teaspoon, it says. Let’s see…” He pours oil into a tiny spoon.

  • He stares at the tiny spoon suspiciously.

  • He shouts, “That’s it?!” Nick: “How much more pure fat do you want?”


  • Nick is fiddling with the cityphone. “Hey, man, your phone says that baking stuff is a healthy way to cook things.”

  • Max: “Really?! That’s great news!” Nick: “It is?”

  • Later, Nick walks into the house. There’s a delicious aroma in the air. Nick: “What the…”

  • Nick walks in on Max pulling a pan of cookies out of the oven. “When they said bake, they meant meat and stuff, not cookies.” Max: “They did?”


  • Max: “Steaming food is healthy, I hear. Let’s do this!” He puts some vegetables into a steamer.

  • He stares at the pot intently as it cooks.

  • Max is still staring at the pot. Water vapor is venting out of it, turning the room into a steamy sauna.

  • Nick walks in. “Why did you turn the house into a sauna?” Max: “I’m cooking!” Nick: “For how long?” Max: “Oh, maybe two hours or so.”


  • Max, with a pan, looking determined: “I shall cook this meat thoroughly to burn off the fat!”

  • He’s cooking. The stove is turned up all the way, so that you can see the flames.

  • He’s still cooking the meat, which is smoking and black.

  • Nick walks in holding his nose. Max: “Oh, hey, Nick. Ready to eat?” Nick: “Eat what, grilled carbon?”


  • Nick and Alice are standing in front of Max. Nick, seriously: “Max, I am holding an intervention.”

  • Nick: “Your cooking, might… might need work.” Alice: “It’s okay, Max. I’m here to help.”

  • Max: “What are you talking about? My cooking is delicious!”

  • The camera zooms out. Max is cooking food, food that is completely blackened and smoking. Alice: “If you like the taste of coal, maybe.”


  • Alice is showing Max the different dishes she is cooking. Alice: “You’re on the right track. Stir-frying is a great way to cook.”

  • She shows him several bottles of spices. “Try adding spices for flavor instead of just salt.”

  • Alice shows him a spread of ingredients. “The more colorful your meal, the better!”

  • Max, comically dejected: “I’m still waiting for the part where you say, ‘And now you deep-fry the potatoes in this vat of boiling oil…” Alice: “I’m afraid not, buddy.”


  • Monday. Max is weighing himself. “Hey, I’m a pound lighter!”

  • Tuesday. “Wait, now I’m three pounds heavier…”

  • Wednesday. “Now I lost two pounds?”

  • Thursday. “PLUS FOUR?! I DON’T GET IT”


  • Max, to Nick: “Dude, I think there’s something wrong with my scale!”

  • Nick: “What is it?” Max: “It keeps going crazy! It keeps saying I’ve lost weight, then gained weight, then lost, every day!”

  • Nick: “That’s not the scale… that’s you!”

  • The main character is in extreme (comical) shock.


  • Max and Nick are walking: “So you’re saying my weight fluctuates?”

  • Nick: “Yeah, didn’t you know? The amount of fluid in your body, the last time you’ve worked out, the stage in your digestion, all change your weight day to day.

  • They keep walking.

  • Max: “So I can’t really lose four pounds in one day?” Nick: “No, man, you can’t.” Max: “Awww…”


  • Max walks through the front door, looking totally stressed. “Ugh, what a terrible day at work today…”

  • We see him at the kitchen table eating a ton of food. “My boss is totally nuts! I don’t know what he’s thinking sometimes…”

  • We see him at the couch, eating even more. “I mean, he wants all the paperwork in by Monday? How can he expect us to…”

  • He looks around at all the food he’s just eaten. “…whoops.”


  • Max is sitting at the table, looking horribly guilty and surrounded by eaten food. Nick walks in. “Whoa, what happened here?”

  • Max: “What happened here?! I screwed up! I ate way too much! I broke my diet plan?!”

  • Max, freaking out: “OH NO! I can’t do this! I’m dead! I can’t go back! I messed up big time!”

  • Max, still freaking, staring imploringly at Nick: “What do I do, man?!” Nick: “First, you’re going to take a deep breath…”


  • Alice, Nick, and Max are sitting at the table. Alice: “So you got stressed out at work, and over-ate…”

  • Max, still looking sad. “That’s pretty much it.” Nick: “C’mon, Max, it happens, you know?”

  • Alice: “Yeah, you’ve been doing so well so far! You put in way too much effort to let one slip-up get you down!”

  • Max: “’One little slip-up?’ So what was that time when I lit the kitchen on fire?” Alice: “That was something else entirely.”


  • Max: “You’re right. In the grand scheme of things, one-time overeating isn’t the end of the world.”

  • Alice: “That’s right!” Nick: “That’s the spirit!”

  • Alice: “You just gotta focus on the positives, you know? Don’t give up entirely because of one little thing.

  • Max looks around at all the food lying around. “…or one big thing.” Alice: “…you know what I mean.”


  • Max is walking by, looking nervous. Nick: “What’s eating you?

  • Max: “It’s just… just an appointment with the doctor.” Nick: “Oh, no. Does that mean what I think it means?...”

  • Max nods. Nick looks horrified…

  • NEEDLES. The two look afraid, as they share a mutual fear of needles.


  • Max, thinking while walking next to the doctor: “Here it comes: the scale…”

  • Max, thinking: “Every time, I don’t like looking at it and seeing the doctor’s judgmental stare…”

  • Max, thinking: “But now, they’ll be impressed! I’m a new man with a new diet!”

  • Max is standing on the scale. Doctor: “Oh, hey. You dropped a pound and a half!” Max, thinking: “That’s it?!”


  • Max is sitting in a chair and thinking. “Just a pound and a half? I thought I would have been dropping weight faster than that!” In the background, doctor: “Okay, we need to do your bloodwork…”

  • Max, thinking: “I mean, I’ve been making my diet better… right? And exercising for the first time.” In the background, doctor: “Which means, of course, that I’m going to have to withdraw blood with this needle…”

  • Max, still thinking: “This is going slower than I thought!” Doctor, in the background: “I’m sticking the needle in now…”

  • The doctor is done withdrawing blood. “Wow, that was better than usual! Usually you freak out every time I come close to you with a needle.” Max, snapped out of his reverie: “When the who does what with a needle?”


  • Max is sitting in the waiting room.

  • The doctor walks up with a piece of paper. “So here, I have the results of your blood test.”

  • Max sits up nervously. Doctor: “And, as it turns out…”

  • Doctor: “Your cholesterol has actually gone down!” Max: “It has?!” He looks extremely happy.


  • The doctor and Max are sitting at some chairs. Doctor: “Your cholesterol is still high, so you still have to be careful…”

  • Doctor: “…but it’s actually gone down!” Max, sitting confidently and leaning back, nods.

  • Doctor: “I have to ask, though. Does your family have a record of heart disease or diabetes?”

  • Max is jolted out of his confidence.


  • Max, to the doctor: “A lot of my family has diabetes, actually. I just kind of assumed that I would get it too.”

  • Doctor: “Not necessarily. There’s more than one factor controlling diabetes. And with your downward trend in cholesterol, it looks like you have a chance of avoiding it.” Max looks surprised.

  • Max: “Really?” Doctor: “There’s a chance.”

  • Max leans in closer. “Really really?” Doctor: “Yes, Max. Really.”


  • Max, to Nick: “…and then the doctor said that if I keep a healthy lifestyle, I could avoid the diabetes that runs in my family.”

  • Nick: “Really?” Max: “Yeah! Crazy, right?”

  • Max’s cityphone buzzes. Max and Nick look at it.

  • Max picks it up and holds it in the air. “Phone, you are a lifesaver!” Nick: “Good for you, man!”


  • Max is shopping for healthy food.

  • Max is cooking a healthy meal, looking at a cookbook.

  • Max is exercising hard.

  • Max is looking fired up. “RAWR” Nick, grinning. “So how’s the healthy life going?”


  • Max comes home dressed in workout clothes, obviously back from exercising. Nick: “You’ve been doing pretty good at this cityphone thing, huh?”

  • Max: “Yeah I have! I can even cook now!” Nick: “Really? I’ve been too scared to eat your cooking…”

  • Max: “Your loss. Your tastebuds couldn’t even handle the deliciousness that is my food.” Nick: “Really? Would you feel comfortable cooking for a girl?”

  • Max: “Challenge accepted!” Nick: “It’s on!”


  • Alice is over at Nick and Max’s place. Alice: “So Max can apparently cook now?” Nick: “Or so he claims…”

  • Alice: “Well, I don’t smell anything burning yet.” Nick: “Just give it another five minutes. We’ll see smoke.”

  • Max yells from the kitchen: “For your information, Nick, I haven’t burned anything for two weeks!” Nick: “Oh, good. I’m glad our apartment is safe.” Alice laughs.

  • Max pokes his head out of the kitchen, looking comically aloof. “Whatever. You mock me now, but wait until you taste my works of art.” Alice, grinning. “I’m sure they could be put in a museum.”


  • Max is setting down plates at the table. “Eat it and weep, kids! Mango chicken stir-fry, grilled vegetable kebabs, and a juicy fruit salad.” Nick and Alice look at the food.

  • Nick and Alice tentatively pick up their forks.

  • Nick and Alice slowly, cautiously taste the food.

  • Nick and Alice look shocked, but in a good way. Max looks smug.


  • Nick, Max, and Alice are sitting and eating with gusto. Alice: “Wow, Max, this is actually really good!”

  • Nick: “Yeah, man, I might just have to eat your cooking from now on! This is actually better than instant ramen!” On the side, Max finishes his food.

  • Max finishes his food and stands up. “Well, guys, I’m glad you enjoyed it—but now I’m going to go for a brisk walk to help burn it off.”

  • Nick and Alice are left at the table alone, staring in awe where Max was just standing. Alice: “It’s like talking to a different person.” Nick: “You think you know a guy…”


  • Alice and Max are talking. Alice: “I have to say, I’m really impressed! I can’t believe you’re taking the cityphone so seriously!”

  • Max: “Well, when I went to the doctor, I realized…”

  • Max: “My weight isn’t an inevitability; it’s something I can control. Something I can change!”

  • Max’s phone beeps loudly. Max: “…as annoying as this phone may be.” Alice: “Can’t you at least change the ringtone or something?”

#84 the last comic from a year ago…

  • Max, thinking: “This is great! I’m eating right, exercising…”

  • “I’ll be a skinnier, healthier person in no time! I’m going to change my life!”

  • Max: “Yup… the future is lookin’ pretty good!”

  • Back to the present day. Max is lying with his head on the table, with junk food all around him. “…”

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