Trump was always noise: but hateful, harmful noise
The first time I was in the same room as Donald Trump was in the summer of 2015, right after he'd begun focusing his rhetoric on how Mexicans were rapists to aid his argument that we needed a wall between the US and Mexico.
Back then no one actually imagined that the man we all knew from his hotels or reality show could be a serious candidate for president, let alone the actual president. This was made evident as I sat in the Chicago ballroom. Colleagues sitting close by were seemingly not bothered by anything he said. One reporter was even flipping through a magazine as she let her recorder run.
After his talk, he held a small press conference inside a bar area where we were all alerted of something "huge", as he would say: he had been fired from his NBC show The Apprentice. This time the room immediately erupted with reporters launching questions. Soon after he left the room, as mostly Latino protesters continued to chant outside the building that Trump was a racist.