Extreme Makeover does the White House

Ty Pennington applies his design magic to the seat of presidential power

As Ty Pennington addressed the Extreme Makeover: Home Edition team in their motor home, a tear began to form in his eye: “Guys, we’ve done some special projects in the past, but I think you’ll agree, Extreme Makeover: Home Edition has never done a home makeover for a more deserving family than this one. Let’s take a look at the tape.”

Pennington started his VCR and a weeping face appeared on the screen:

“My husband has had just about the roughest year of his life,” the sweet-looking woman intoned, “and in the meantime, he just hasn’t had a spare moment to deal with things here at home.”

“Is that the first lady?” Designer Michael Moloney was shaking his head in dismay. “She looks awful! She really must be going through a lot.”

“Yeah,” said Ty, “In addition to all she’s been through, she just heard that the Vice President’s daughter is gay, and I don’t have to tell you guys what a shock THAT must have been!”

Meanwhile, in the video, Laura Bush continued her somber walk through their gloomy house. “As you can see, the Lincoln Bedroom hasn’t gotten nearly as much use as it did when the Clintons lived here, and it’s really starting to show.”

“Look at those awful white columns!” Designer Preston Sharp had already begun kneading his cheekbones in anticipation of the stress of this remodeling project. “It’s so neoclassical. Where do they think they are, the Parthenon?”

Back to the video: “Not only has our home been neglected, but poor Georgie’s career has suffered some horrible blows these past few months. First there was that terrible Michael Moore, with his awful lies about all of us. And then this past week, it’s been the debates.” Laura stopped to dry a tear — or maybe to touch up her mascara — it’s hard to tell on the video. “Losing the first one was bad enough, but then the second, and the third. It’s … it’s … wait, give me more time. I’ll think of something to say.” Another awkward pause. “It’s just so hard, with the MOST LIBERAL SENATOR in the WORLD breathing down your neck all the time. It’s really just hard work.”

“I don’t know about you, people, but I think this family really needs us,” said Ty.

Sexy designer Constance Ramos was crying so hard her blouse was becoming transparent. “I don’t know of anything I do that’s more rewarding than work like this,” she sobbed. “We’re really going to make a difference in this family’s life.”

“And we couldn’t do any of it if it wasn’t for the friendly folks at Sears!” Ty flashed his gleaming white smile. “Now let’s get to work! I need a good excuse to take my shirt off.”

Within minutes, Ty was outside the bus, screaming through his trademark bullhorn: “GOOD MORNING BUSH FAMILY! Today is YOUR LUCKY DAY!” After a minor tussle with the Secret Service and a tour of the White House, he pulled President Bush aside. “George, your family has done all THIS for YOU, so now you need to get out of our way while we fix up this dilapidated joint. What is it, a couple hundred years old?”

“Well, I am a little busy just now,” the president responded. “Do you think we could postpone this until, say November 3rd?”

“Hmmm … let me just check my schedule … no, not good for me: got a calendar shoot. Besides, there’s no time like the present! Let me tell you, I talked to your buddy Cheney, and he told me he’s got everything under control. Don’t worry! We’re sending you to Vegas: a week of hot chicks, booze, and gambling!”

“Well, I don’t know … I think they really could use me here.”

“Cheney told me you’d be like this, so he gave me just three words: ‘Iran’s going down’! I tell you, he’s got things under control. Now get out of here, big guy!”

Within hours, the Bushes were off to Sin City, and a team of hundreds of carpenters, plumbers, electricians, and intelligence infrastructure experts had gutted the entire White House.

“As you might expect,” Ty shouted into his bullhorn, “things are getting a little hectic in here. So just to make things a little more interesting, let’s hook up with the President on the videophone! George, are you there?”

“Yes, I am — we’re just having a rip-roarin’ good time here, but we’re still a little concerned about what you’re doing with our house.”

“Oh, don’t worry about us,” Ty responded, sidestepping a 20-foot marble column as it crashed to the floor. “Now about your office. It seems a little impractical. I mean, it’s oval! Makes it kind of hard to put up pictures.”

“Well, I’m not sure we oughta, I mean Laura–”

“Oh, you LIKED the round walls? Well, I think it might be a little late to do anything about that.”

“Hey! You can’t–”

“I’m sorry, George, the connection is breaking up here! I’m sure you’ll do just fine with a purple hexagonal office!”

“Heptucular? What’s that?”

“Sorry, George, I can’t hear you at all! We’ll talk later.”

Just a few short days later, the Bushes were back and ready to view their new home.

“Damn this hangover. I’ve never had such a –” the President winced as Laura slapped him on the shoulder. “Oh, are the cameras rolling? I mean we’ve had such a great time this past week! I can’t wait to see what they’ve done to our house!”


“Yes, and we’re also ready for you to get rid of that megaphone.”


Tears began to stream over Laura’s face as she saw what had been done to her home.

“Look at that, tears of joy from the first lady. Yes, it really is an amazing transformation, isn’t it? Now people can’t say you live in the White House, because all that white siding has been replaced with SOLID BRICK, courtesy of SEARS! Laura, I bet you can’t WAIT to go inside!”

And what did they see inside? Other than the standard plasma-TV-in-each-room, Corian-counters-and-stainless-steel-appliances-in-the-kitchen, and plugs-for-SEARS-every-thirty-seconds, not much. The real surprise was what was waiting for Bush in his now-hexagonal office: the folks from ABC’s Extreme Makeover plastic surgery show were ready to remove that awful hump from the president’s back!

Bush's bulge

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