'Morning John, OK, got it. It' s the difference between 'reward' and 'dividend', so it's a bookkeeping thing. Rewards expire sooner, probably come out of a different pool of funds and keep the balance sheet in order. Vivvienne's letter could have been worded much more clearly, something on the order of "instead of dividends you will receive a reward, the difference being...." instead of all that waffly language about it "will feel a lot like" and be "equivalent to". FYI, I'm not alone in this. I'm just one of those who asks questions rather than fumes about it to their social media bubble. I don't use twiddle and farcebook, but quite a few of my acquaintances who do, are expressing displeasure on their social media feeds. Thanks for finally 'splaining it to me, Kayaker Bee
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JohnJ Thanks for trying to clarify, but now I'm really confused. From Vivienne Long's 2/25 email (emphasis added): .." Even though we didn’t make a profit last year, you’ll receive a member reward equivalent to what your dividend would have been: 10% back on your eligible full-price purchases in 2020. This will feel a lot like the dividend experience you’re used to, and you’ll see your total reward in your account on March 1".. In addition, a reply to an equiry under "Ask an employee" said ..." That is why the member reward we are giving to our members is the equivalent amount your dividend would have been". I apologize for being so dense, but both these statements seem to say that dividends are not being paid out as usual. In the past, I've had a dividend that I could apply to a purchase in one lump sum if I so chose. Please define "equivalent amount your dividend would have been". How do I redeem my 'equivalent amount'. The linked page just has the standard membership information it has always had. Cheers, B
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Maybe I'm not understanding how this works and I'm not pissed about it really, it just seems a little bit like smoke and mirrors. Here's my math: I will have to spend more money to access the dividend. Say I have a $200 dividend. Using the 10% discount offered, I have to spend $2000 (on full price items) to access the full dividend value. If the normal rules apply, I won't get future dividends on those $2000 of purchases because we don't receive dividends on discounted items or items purchased using dividends. I'm not quibbling with that policy, to do otherwise would be double-dipping. But, using this example, I'm losing $1800 dollars of purchases that would normally accrue dividends for the 2021 year in order to recover $200 of dividends I've already earned from 2020. Normally I would buy $250 of stuff, use the $200 dividend and only lose future dividends on the remaining $50. I fully understand that dividends are tied to profit, again, not quibbling about that. This solution, however, feels like REI is trying to stimulate sales for recovery and then extending that recovery - at the members' loss - into 2021 by limiting dividends on current eligible purchases. It would have been better to simply acknowledge the crappy year we all had and say 'no dividends'. Am I off base here?
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@Cdawley4 - I've been doing a lot of research on this topic as I prepare for a solo circumnavigation of Lake Superior by kayak. My concern is campsite encounters, not surprising bears on the trail. As a biologist, I love taking deep dives into animal behavior as this knowledge can keep you out of harm's way. I will say one thing in advance: bears don't read books. Every bear is an individual and their behavior is shaped by their own experiences.
Here are few things that might help:
1) Carrying a firearm is one thing. Being able to use it under duress is something else entirely. Bears close distance more rapidly than you can imagine and getting off a kill shot requires expertise, not just the right firearm.
2) Warning shots to chase bears off are discouraged. Loud, unexpected noises will startle bears, but continued exposure habituates them and becomes less affective.
3) Even when you ask for Black bear information specifically, almost all conversations turn toward Grizzly/Brown bears. Very little in-depth information is out there for Black bears. The species do not behave the same. Play dead in a Black bear attack and you will be.
4) The idea that Black bears are benign is not accurate. There is an increasing number of encounters with what seem to be predatory Black bears - for instance stalking for long periods of time or running off after being bear sprayed and then quickly returning. These are rare, but seem to indicate a departure from the usually easy to startle behavior that is taught. Local wildlife offices should be able to tell you about any recent situations.
5) Black bears are curious and body posture will reveal that curiosity. Agitation has a different set of postures. The bear can go from one to the other quickly, depending upon your actions. Learn the differences and the appropriate responses. Because of the belief in #4, people often approach Black bears and precipitate an encounter.
I gleaned a lot of information by reading "Bear Attacks: Their Causes and Avoidance" by Stephen Herrero, a Canadian ecologist. As I said above, the book is heavily skewed toward Brown bears but there is section with good Black bear information.
I think it was Herrero who mentioned sleeping in the middle of your tent as opposed to up against a side. Bears will often explore a tent by poking or nibbling. Not sure where that leaves us hammock campers!
Hands down my favorite comment was from a Backpacker article (it's mostly about Grizzlies (sigh) but still has good info): " Don’t act like you’ve been violated when you get attacked after washing your hair with a fragrance that makes you smell like a 200 pound strawberry." Full article here: https://www.backpacker.com/survival/the-truth-about-bears-the-skills/
NOLS also has some information available.
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I'm planning a 1200 mile, 3 month circumnavigation of Lake Superior and need a waterproof solar panel for the back deck of my sea kayak. The idea is to run the cable into the back hatch to a battery contained in a waterproof box so I can charge all day while I paddle. Getting into camp at 3pm each day may not give me enough time to charge my VHF radio directly from the panel. Any ideas? Cheers, B
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