SKOWHEGAN – Every single dwelling in Somerset County has been nominated for the hit ABC reality show “Extreme Makeover: Home Edition,” producers confirmed yesterday.
“Chalk it up to a grand coincidence,” said county commissioner Irwin Gastia. “It certainly was not a coordinated effort on our part.”
The program typically features needy families with heartbreaking stories and crumbling homes. It makes sense that Somerset County, one of the poorest counties in Maine, would have a lot of applicants, admitted Gastia.
However, Executive Producer George Verschool stressed that the show also seeks to help people who serve their communities while overcoming immense personal challenges, something many of the 52,000 residents of Somerset County seem unaware of.
Andi Parkinson of Solon hopes to get a third addition built on the back of her 1983 double-wide trailer, though she admitted that her application might not go through because she wants to avoid getting a building permit so she won’t have to pay taxes on the increased value of her home.
“They just waste all the money paying the debt on that new [in 2003] fire truck, anyways,” Parkinson said of her town’s elected officials.
Ezekiel Bernard, who lives in a cabin on a dirt road about 13 miles outside of Jackman, and hasn’t spoken to anyone besides his brother in five years, thinks he deserves a “pimped out” cabin with several rooms, a new smoke shack, electricity, and running water.
Even the snooty professionals in Pittsfield, who inhabit the nicest homes in the region and send their kids to private school, believe they deserve extravagant renovations simply because they have to put up with all the riffraff from surrounding towns.
“We’re certainly not living like kings,” stated Thomas Karamavich, owner of a 1990 three-bedroom ranch on Pleasant Street. “And we’ve done a lot for the community, like the time I coached pee-wee basketball for two years because my son was in it, and was never paid a dime, after expenses.”
“My son has asthma, by the way – did I mention that?”
Irwin Gastia, county commissioner, said he owns several apartment buildings in Skowhegan and Fairfield that have been “trashed” by drunken tenants. He hopes ABC can rescue him from his bad investment, considering his many months of public service.
The network says it will announce the winners for next season late this summer. Verschool advised Gastia and other Somerset County applicants “not to hold their breath.”