#WyoStrong: Moving Beyond the Oil Field — How one man is changing his future as well as the face of Gillette

(Gillette, Wyo.) For a lot of people, there comes a point when they wonder if the sacrifice of making a living is that you don't get to have much of a life. Are all the missed Christmases, Easters, and time spent doing what you love, worth giving up? Of course the uncertainty of where or when you'll get your next paycheck often trumps the gnawing feeling that you're missing out, and most people stay where they are. But for the energy industry, and in Campbell County especially, that kind of choice is now being made for you. Changing your career path is not so much a dream these days, as a reality and a necessity. It certainly was for Trevers Chapman, who found himself power washing rigs in 50 below zero degree weather in North Dakota. He'd just taken a pay cut, and had lost time with his kids that he was never going to get back.The political climate around the oil industry was turning nasty, and he began rethinking his life. "I was just miserable. I would get up and go to work, and I dreaded it," Chapman said of the years he spent on the oil field. "I don't care what kind of guy you are, all of us have those thoughts like: 'I'm done.' Then you tell yourself, 'No. I can't be a quitter. Tough it out.' But I knew then I could do more, there was something else I could do." The transition away from the oil rigs was not necessarily an easy one to start. It took him many years to figure out what exactly was important to him, and what he liked to do. "I like to work with my hands. I'd rather work on a pipeline with a shovel than spend any time in a cubicle," he confessed. "I like to be social. I wanted to own something that would benefit the community." [image: 10154117_459954454203046_5306627887194547243_n.jpg] A lifelong resident of Gillette, he took a look around at what was missing here. It was November, and he'd just shaved off his beard. When it started to grow back itchy, he realized there was no place to buy men's grooming things -- beard oils, balms, and combs. He figured he could still work his oil field job and run the shop in his spare time. But every time he researched products, the idea of going to barber school kept presenting itself. The choice became easy last March, when crews were asked who wanted to take a voluntary layoff. So he used his unemployment benefits to learn a new skill. "I will never downplay the oil industry or the work. The person you have to be to stay in the industry is very strong willed, but you have to give up a lot. For me, I was tired of sacrificing. The money was no longer the most important thing." After six months training in Salt Lake City, and with the help of his mother, former Bailey's Bar & Grill owner Lorain Chapman, he secured a location on South Gillette Avenue across from his wife's cupcake shop, Alla Lala Bakery. The space holds not only four barber chairs, but several different lounge areas for reading or talking, and a back room for playing pool. Rapscallions Barbershop, which is set to open in the coming week, is no longer just a place to get a haircut and buy some beard oil. It's a social club for men in Gillette. "I'm hoping that when someone comes in for a shave and a haircut, they can cultivate a relationship not just with their barber, but with other guys." The idea is to create an environment that will make people from all walks of life comfortable. "Maybe you'll sit next to a guy you never even knew existed, but you have kids the same age, and you start talking." #county17 #news