Let Inga Tell You

  • Let Inga Tell You: The most expensive Jell-o you never ate

    Let Inga Tell You: The most expensive Jell-o you never ate

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Before Olof even got home from the hospital in January after his heart attack and brain injury (from falling during the heart attack), I already had my spreadsheet set up and my phone log ready. I knew from Olof's 2009 surgery that went awry that my part-time job in 2018 was...

  • Let Inga Tell You: My (very) brief career as a pot head

    Let Inga Tell You: My (very) brief career as a pot head

    LET INGA TELL YOU: My husband and I may be among the few people who went to college in the late 1960s and never dabbled in pot — then or since. We've both always preferred things we could sip. But then came medical marijuana . My older son Rory had mentioned to me that medical marijuana might help...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Trashed

    Let Inga Tell You: Trashed

    LET INGA TELL YOU: If you watch the Environmental Services trucks pick up trash on Monday mornings, it is pretty amazing that the City-mandated black trash receptacles last as long as they do. Our garbage pickup vehicles are seemingly modeled after one of those amusement park rides that yanks people...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The scourge of home ownership

    Let Inga Tell You: The scourge of home ownership

    LET INGA TELL YOU: There are times when home ownership feels like the worst idea ever. Like, for example, when you have a difficult-to-diagnose problem that you just know is going to suck up endless amounts of time and money and still may not get resolved. Such was the case recently when we noticed...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Following up from previous columns

    Let Inga Tell You: Following up from previous columns

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Well, I haven't always been winning friends lately, particularly not among gastroenterologists, environmentalists, and even a few dentists. To follow up: Dental offices: I wrote a column recently called "Down in the mouth" about coming in for a routine teeth cleaning to my long-time...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Inga's all-time favorite quotes

    Let Inga Tell You: Inga's all-time favorite quotes

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Over the years, I've been collecting favorite quotes — way too many to list here. But this week I'd like to share a few, some of which seem truly prescient for their time — especially the first three: "In America, anybody can be president. That's one of the risks you take." —...

  • Let Inga Tell You: For the love of Lily

    Let Inga Tell You: For the love of Lily

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When Olof and I were asked to be dog foster parents a year and a half ago, we were clear to the rescue agency that we were not going to have another permanent dog. We had been utterly flattened for months after the sudden death of our English bulldog, Winston. He was a total...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The last parking place in La Jolla

    Let Inga Tell You: The last parking place in La Jolla

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It is a new era when you select your bank based not on their financial services but on the strategic location of their parking lot. Thanks to them, I always have a half hour of parking in downtown La Jolla. I consider it a mental health move. I used to tell myself during the...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Colonoscopies, Revisited

    Let Inga Tell You: Colonoscopies, Revisited

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I was genuinely surprised when one of the biggest responses I've ever received to a column was to the one about colonoscopies. (The recent column about high-pressure dentists had a surprising response, too, but I'll follow up on that one another time.) I will merely say that...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Water leaks and dyslexic meter readers

    Let Inga Tell You: Water leaks and dyslexic meter readers

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Editor's Note: This column, originally published in June, 2015, addresses the issues of water leaks and misread water meters currently in the news.   It's never good news when your refrigerator suddenly starts sounding like a fountain. We actually have a small recirculating outdoor...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Home and on the mend

    Let Inga Tell You: Home and on the mend

    LET INGA TELL YOU: As I told my husband Olof as they were moving him from the Cardiac ICU to the Trauma ICU, I wasn't that desperate for column material. A week before his recent heart attack-cum-traumatic-brain-injury, I had been wondering aloud at dinner whether after nine years of writing my...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Not the best of times

    Let Inga Tell You: Not the best of times

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Last week, I wrote about my husband Olof's surprising heart attack after he'd just spent a year getting down to his ideal weight, eschewing alcohol and bad carbs, and walking two hours a day. So much self-sacrifice and you STILL have a heart attack? Profoundly unfair. I could...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Down, but not out yet

    Let Inga Tell You: Down, but not out yet

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Sometimes life is truly not fair. As his 2017 New Year's resolution, my husband Olof decided that he would celebrate full retirement by getting himself into the absolutely best shape he could be. And with Olof's signature determination, he began walking two hours a day; swore...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Down in the mouth

    Let Inga Tell You: Down in the mouth

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Like many people our age, Olof and I don't have happy childhood memories of going to the dentist. Fillings were done without Novocaine and neither of us can hear the sound of a dentist drill without feeling pain, even if we have been rendered completely unconscious with anesthesia....

  • Let Inga Tell You: The case for starting school one hour later

    Let Inga Tell You: The case for starting school one hour later

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I was interested to read in a recent La Jolla Light that the issue of whether to change the start time of Muirlands Middle School and La Jolla High is once again being raised. My sons are now in their late 30s, so it’s a moot point. But my vote, if I had one, would be a resounding...

  • 'Tis the season for silly ideas

    'Tis the season for silly ideas

    I couldn’t help but notice in December that my WTF? file of silly ideas was getting fuller. The first, of course, was when we received an e-mail from our dental group alerting us that we had not used all of our dental insurance benefits for the year and advising that there was still time to make...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Happy Holidays from stormy San Diego

    Let Inga Tell You: Happy Holidays from stormy San Diego

    Editor's Note: Inga is on vacation. This is one of her favorite holiday columns from years past.   Dear American and Swedish friends, It is hard to believe that it is time for our annual holiday letter again. As I sit here at my computer on this chill night snuggled in my warmest beach hoodie and...

  • Let Inga Tell You: How an engineer makes cookies

    Let Inga Tell You: How an engineer makes cookies

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Editor's Note: Inga is on vacation. This is one of her favorite holiday columns. Two weeks before Christmas, my recently-retired engineer husband suffered an uncharacteristic attack of nostalgia and announced he was going to make his family's holiday cookie recipes for the kids,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Thankful for the grandkids

    Let Inga Tell You: Thankful for the grandkids

    LET INGA TELL YOU: We are truly headed into what I think of as the Golden Years of Grandparentdom — all five grandkids are now officially potty-trained, most of them dress and bathe themselves, all of them seem delightfully curious and expressive about the world around them, and none of them are...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Thanks but no thanks, Ben

    Let Inga Tell You: Thanks but no thanks, Ben

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It's not only modern men in power positions who are clueless about women. If Ben Franklin were alive today, I'd love to whack him upside the head with my Susan B. Anthony T-shirt. OK, I'll give him credit for the lightening rod, bifocals, the Franklin stove, and for helping lay...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Inga's Holiday Gift Guide

    Let Inga Tell You: Inga's Holiday Gift Guide

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I was frankly concerned about being labeled "Grammy Cheapskate" for getting my young grandchildren tax-deductible gifts for Christmas, but last year they turned out to be the best gifts ever. Now I think we'd all agree that just making a donation in a child's name to a wildlife...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Are gadgets getting smarter or are we getting dumber?

    Let Inga Tell You: Are gadgets getting smarter or are we getting dumber?

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Every time I see an ad for another "smart" household gadget, the only thing that comforts me is the thought that I am old and will probably die soon. It's all gotten too complicated. I came to this conclusion while having dinner at the home of friends and couldn't operate their...

  • Let Inga Tell You: West Side (of L.A.) Story

    Let Inga Tell You: West Side (of L.A.) Story

    LET INGA TELL YOU: My son and daughter-in-law really thought their extensive kitchen remodel would be done when they booked us four months in advance to babysit our 3-, 6-, and 8-year-old grandkids in L.A. for six days while they went on a 10th wedding anniversary trip. As the time of their trip...

  • Let Inga Tell You: They will come, but will they pay to park?

    Let Inga Tell You: They will come, but will they pay to park?

    LET INGA TELL YOU: On Oct.19, the La Jolla Light ran a story by reporter Corey Levitan titled "Westfield UTC's building it, will you come?" By coincidence, my husband and I had just been up there the week before for the first time since construction began with the intention of making a quick stop...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Life with Paleo Guy

    Let Inga Tell You: Life with Paleo Guy

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It has really been only in the most recent history that humans — well, first-world humans anyway — have had the luxury of deciding what they want to eat. This has led to endless debate and virtually no agreement on what constitutes a healthy food regimen. I know a number of people,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Hoping for a cure for colonoscopies

    Let Inga Tell You: Hoping for a cure for colonoscopies

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Scientists of the world: Want a guaranteed Nobel Prize? Find an alternative to colonoscopies. Seriously, you will have the world worshipping at your feet. There would be mass rallies of ecstatic oldies dancing in the streets, pouring jugs of GoLytely into sewer drains. For the...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Lost in translation

    Let Inga Tell You: Lost in translation

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Having lived an aggregate of three years in foreign countries whose languages I did not speak when I got there, I am usually the last one to make fun of anyone's English language skills. I can assure you that I have provided many foreigners with a great deal of entertainment...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The curse of smart appliances

    Let Inga Tell You: The curse of smart appliances

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It's getting harder and harder to find dumb appliances. You'd think that with tens of millions of us Boomers descending into incipient senility that appliance manufacturers would be falling all over themselves to create the Jitterbug phone version of washers, dryers, stoves,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: In pursuit of creativity

    Let Inga Tell You: In pursuit of creativity

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Everyone has a creative strategy, a time when you can really let your mind go wherever it wants in pursuit of problem solving or the unleashing of artistic energies. Olof's is mulling. Mine is wombing. Olof's prime mulling time is in bed at night before he goes to sleep. Now...

  • Let Inga Tell You: It's a sticky situation

    Let Inga Tell You: It's a sticky situation

    LET INGA TELL YOU:   It's comforting to know that after I'm gone, I'll live on through Post-it notes. Truly, I think Uber and yellow sticky notes are the greatest innovations of modern times. I'm not sure what I did without either. Self-adhesive Post-it notes in assorted sizes have been around...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Breaking the (dress) code

    Let Inga Tell You: Breaking the (dress) code

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Even in a beach community, restaurants have standards, as in the not-uncommon sign, "No shirt — no shoes — no come in." It goes without saying that they're referring to guys as nothing would probably be better for business than women showing up topless. Over the course of my...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Embracing 70 (especially considering the alternative)

    Let Inga Tell You: Embracing 70 (especially considering the alternative)

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I've said this before: 60 may be the new 40, but 70 is still the old 70. Olof and I decided, therefore, that our ideal joint-birthday celebration would be a low-key three-day weekend with kids and grandkids. Amazingly, given everyone's preponderance of activities, we managed...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The Joy of Fostering

    Let Inga Tell You: The Joy of Fostering

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It is the legacy of our still-mourned bulldog Winston that we began fostering dogs a year ago through Holly's Garden Rescue, a wonderful small-breed volunteer rescue organization in El Cajon. One of those dogs, Lily, is now our forever dog. Olof and I are actually the worst foster...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Caw Wars

    Let Inga Tell You: Caw Wars

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Is it just me or have the last few years brought a preponderance of crows to our area? It seems like every morning we wake up to caw wars. These are some seriously noisy little suckers. The first question anyone asks about crows is whether they're actually ravens, which have...

  • Let Inga Tell You: So how hard is it to make food taste good if you use enough butter?

    Let Inga Tell You: So how hard is it to make food taste good if you use enough butter?

    LET INGA TELL YOU: It was a source of puzzlement to me for some years that my husband, Olof, who does not cook, is a huge fan of cooking shows. Now, I've addressed this topic before. After realizing that he had watched the same six episodes of a certain cooking show some 20 times, I finally observed,...

  • Against all odds, it lived

    Against all odds, it lived

    LET INGA TELL YOU: If I had to sum up what I've spent my time on during the last three years, it would be one word: trees. I wrote a column a year ago called "It was more than just a tree" about the beautiful 35-foot kaffir plum tree that was not only the focal point of our front yard for four...

  • Let Inga Tell You: A small car driver in a big car town

    Let Inga Tell You: A small car driver in a big car town

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I used to be fairly certain that my end would come in a Bird Rock roundabout. But now I'm pretty sure that my last moments will be backing out of a parking spot between two SUVs in front of the public library. Or maybe it will be backing out of a spot on the Fay Avenue Speedway....

  • Let Inga Tell You: Dells and dales and vales

    Let Inga Tell You: Dells and dales and vales

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When Olof and I lived in Sweden and had the opportunity to take a trip above the Arctic Circle, we were not surprised to learn that the Sami (formerly known as Lapplanders) had some 1,000 words related to reindeer. (The word tundra, by the way, is Sami). The Sami traditionally...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Please listen carefully

    Let Inga Tell You: Please listen carefully

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I continue to be puzzled that no matter what business number I call, the recording advises me to "Please listen carefully as our menu options have changed." Inquiring minds want to know: What is it about business phones that they feel compelled to constantly change their menu...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The Case for Letting Yourself Go

    Let Inga Tell You: The Case for Letting Yourself Go

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When my young granddaughter was visiting one weekend, she queried, "Mormor, why do you always wear the same thing?" I turned to my husband, Olof. "I think I've just been fashion-shamed by a 5-year-old." As I explained to her it only looks like the same thing. I actually have...

  • Let Inga Tell You: When more is not more

    Let Inga Tell You: When more is not more

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Being defeated by an alarm clock was definitely a new low in my ever-deteriorating relationship with technology. The iHome Color Changing FM Dual Alarm Clock Radio + USB Charger was actually a Christmas gift from my younger son and his wife. Message to kids: I don't know how...

  • Let Inga Tell You: It was in the cards

    Let Inga Tell You: It was in the cards

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I still have the now slightly-moldy handmade card my older son Rory gave me for Mother's Day when he was 10: You've been like a mother to me, it reads. In point of fact, Rory had no lack of mothers in his life. He had a biological mother. I was his adoptive mother, and my ex-husband's...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The worst idea ever

    Let Inga Tell You: The worst idea ever

    LET INGA TELL YOU: For reasons unclear to me, airlines keep revisiting the idea of allowing passengers to make Wi-Fi calls on their cell phones during flight. Meanwhile, according to the International Air Transport Association, cases of air rage increased 16.4 percent from 2014 to 10,854 (from...

  • Let Inga Tell You: How we became a canine dentist's dream

    Let Inga Tell You: How we became a canine dentist's dream

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Boy, have I had a chance to eat some words. And since they involve teeth, the phrase is apropos. A little more than a year ago, I wrote a column about brushing dogs' teeth which at the time I found to be an absolutely hilarious concept. When I was growing up, every household...

  • Let Inga Tell You: A pilot makes pizza

    Let Inga Tell You: A pilot makes pizza

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When my engineer husband announced he wanted to make homemade pizza, I recognized a thinly disguised excuse to use the fancy stand mixer that he bought to make cookies for my book event two years ago. This is a man who has never met a gadget he didn't like. He was dying to use...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Rotten Apple — iPhone 7

    Let Inga Tell You: Rotten Apple — iPhone 7

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I know some people who can’t wait to upgrade their cell phones when a new model comes out. Personally, I’d rather eat my own organs. Anyone who has read my column for a while knows that I have a hate-hate relationship with technology. My antediluvian view is that it should make...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Fiduciary advice from Auntie Inga

    Let Inga Tell You: Fiduciary advice from Auntie Inga

    LET INGA TELL YOU: As you've probably been reading, the fiduciary rule — the one that says that financial advisers have to put the client's interests first — may not go into effect in April after all. A recent article in US News reported that non-fiduciary advice costs Americans $17 billion a year....

  • Let Inga Tell You: The happiest years of your life

    Let Inga Tell You: The happiest years of your life

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Some months ago, AARP Bulletin ran an article about happiness and cited a study that maintained people reached the peak of happiness in their lives between 65 and 70. This, of course, immediately piqued my interest since Olof and I are both in that demographic. Some of this happiness...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Dawn's way too early light

    Let Inga Tell You: Dawn's way too early light

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Finally I'm living the life I was meant to live. I just had to wait 65 years for it. I've always been a night person, or more specifically, NOT a morning person. But until I retired a few years ago, circumstances maliciously forced me to live the life of people who were compelled...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Getting an 'A' in Uber

    Let Inga Tell You: Getting an 'A' in Uber

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I recently saw an article on MSN about how you can find out what rating Uber drivers have given you. There wasn't any doubt in my mind that it would be a perfect 5. I only get A's. I do not do B+. I am also an Uber driver's dream: I'm standing out front when they arrive, regardless...

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