As I entered the access code and pushed open the door on Saturday afternoon, I felt a silence envelop me. There was a living room decorated with red-and-gold, Ethan-Allen-ish chairs and couches and a chaise longue meant to invoke a degree of midcentury splendor. Behind it was a dining room table with a large American flag folded across it. (Displaying the American flag on a dining table violates several provisions of the federal law known as the United States Flag Code, said Michael Buss, a flag expert and deputy director at the American Legion.)
And from practically every surface gazed the visage of the adult Donald J. Trump. Photos of Trump, the swinging ‘80s developer; a framed People magazine cover that says “At Home With the Trumps!”m multiple paperback copies of “Art of the Deal”; a Warhol-inspired print of cartoon-colored Donalds; and, next to the flat-screen TV, a life-size cardboard cutout of the man.
As my wife and 12-year-old daughter explored the first floor, occasionally emitting startled yelps, I went upstairs to what another plaque said was “likely the childhood bedroom President Donald J. Trump.” On the wall was a photo of Mr. Trump with Michael Jackson.
I sat down and closed my eyes and tried to imagine young Donald, “a beautiful little boy, very blond and buttery,” as his preschool teacher would remember him, taking his first steps, tagging after his older siblings, stealing his younger brother’s blocks.
The house, while solid, is a modest affair, especially by Trump standards, with normal-size rooms and a tiny front yard. Fred C. Trump built it in 1940 for his wife…
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