Neighborhood Assignment: What to Expect

By Virginia Rice

For my profile assignment I will be interviewing Aaron Speck, the owner of Oklahoma Smokehouse BBQ located on Highway 99 in the Trainsong Neighborhood. I have set up the interview for Tuesday at 2 p.m. when the traffic from lunch has slowed down. I know that Aaron used to live in Oklahoma and for reasons I hope to find out he came to Eugene. Along with the Oklahoma Smokehouse BBQ he owns a cart by the University of Oregon that he runs during the main school year at lunch time for students to enjoy. I hope to find out why BBQ and why he chose those two locations.

Speck’s business has suffered from its location in the Trainsong neighborhood.  He has experienced several thefts from his business and his neighbors, only furthering the crime stereotype in Trainsong. Recent crime reports show that theft and assault are on the rise in Trainsong and I hope to get a reaction from him about how this might affect his business. I want to know Aaron’s history including where he was born and grew up, how ended up in Oklahoma, Eugene, and how he decided to run this business. When I first interviewed Aaron for another neighborhood assignment he mentioned that he would like to move his business. I would love to find out where he would go if he could.

I am not too sure how I want to do this interview. I am a little nervous about talking to someone for an hour without becoming too boring or prying too deep. I know having been interviewed for several profiles about my transplant that I am personally very comfortable telling people all about me. I could also see that being a problem for others who aren’t as comfortable. However, Aaron is a very nice guy who has some great opinions about Trainsong that are note-worthy for my reports. I am looking forward to the experience and hope to get a little out of my own comfort zone a little and find a truly great story.

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