Let Inga Tell You

  • 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...

  • Let Inga Tell You: We shouldn't have done it

    Let Inga Tell You: We shouldn't have done it

    LET INGA TELL YOU: I just want to say, there were extenuating circumstances. And if you're an art collector, please read no further. When my first husband, a physician, finished his two-year commitment to the Navy and opened his private practice, we were really short of money. We'd bought our home...

  • Let Inga Tell You: So what's the worst that can happen?

    Let Inga Tell You: So what's the worst that can happen?

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Every family needs a family worrier — a person who worries about everything from world peace to whether we're out of lunch meat. Someone, after all, has to worry about whether the house will get robbed, sea level is rising, or one of you will get sick the day before you leave...

  • Let Inga Tell You: An Explosive Tale

    Let Inga Tell You: An Explosive Tale

    LET INGA TELL YOU: All right, our home can now officially be certified as weird. I've written about this phenomenon before: the phantom street light in front of our house that both SDG&E and the City claim does not exist. (You can only imagine what it takes to take a burnt-out non-existent street...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The holiday hostess

    Let Inga Tell You: The holiday hostess

    LET INGA TELL YOU: After the holidays, I love to collect stories from friends who were hosting large crowds of picky eaters. Seriously, these women qualify for sainthood. Unless it's a genuine allergy situation (verified by a note from the guest's doctor), I tend to go with my mother's philosophy,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Big game hunting, La Jolla-style

    Let Inga Tell You: Big game hunting, La Jolla-style

    Let Inga Tell You: Given how frequently I have written about our rat problems, never mind the possum that maliciously died under my kitchen the day before Thanksgiving in 2015, it is not surprising that friends contact me when creatures of the rodential persuasion take up residence on their property....

  • Let Inga Tell You: The 12 Days of Christmas

    Let Inga Tell You: The 12 Days of Christmas

    LET INGA TELL YOU: On the first day of Christmas, my true love gave to me A big box of French pastry.   On the second day of Christmas, my colleague gave to me Two chocolate cheesecakes.   On the third day of Christmas, my neighbor gave to me Three dozen Christmas cookies.   On the fourth day of...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The Christmas Dinner from Heck

    Let Inga Tell You: The Christmas Dinner from Heck

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Friendships can be tested in many ways, but nothing really compares to a 5-year-old with a violin. A close friend's three boys were good friends with my two, and our families dined together frequently. My friend had always wanted a daughter, and in what I am speculating was the...

  • Let Inga Tell You: When your house is the same age as you are

    Let Inga Tell You: When your house is the same age as you are

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Olof and I and our house all came into existence in 1947. As the three of us slowly deteriorate, we can only see this as a sign of inanimate solidarity on the part of the house. While the house still has the same footprint it did in 1947, the interior has been substantially upgraded....

  • Let Inga Tell You: The year of living deafeningly

    Let Inga Tell You: The year of living deafeningly

    LET INGA TELL YOU: The day after my next door neighbor's seeming-endless remodel was finally finished recently, I took my newspaper out to the patio on a beautiful Saturday morning to celebrate, only to be greeted by chainsaws. The neighbor on the other side of him was doing an all-day tree job....

  • Let Inga Tell You: How to be a professional listiclist

    Let Inga Tell You: How to be a professional listiclist

    LET INGA TELL YOU: This is going to sound like sour grapes, but it seems more and more that online media has jettisoned articles requiring actual writing skills in favor of "listicles" or articles that begin with a number: 7 steps to better cardiac health. 5 reasons your daughter-in-law hates you....

  • Let Inga Tell You: It Takes a Village — Saving Moo

    Let Inga Tell You: It Takes a Village — Saving Moo

    LET INGA TELL YOU: On Aug. 15, as I was picking up allergy medication for our foster dog at La Jolla Veterinary Hospital on Fay, I couldn't help but notice the flier for a found Shih Tzu on their bulletin board. He looked like the identical twin of our previous foster dog, Percy, who, freshly rehabbed,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The best news I've ever heard

    Let Inga Tell You: The best news I've ever heard

    LET INGA TELL YOU: The news only gets better and better. In addition to chocolate's many positive health benefits — foremost among them making life worth living — it has now been proven that it dramatically improves brain function. I should mention that I have been collecting articles on the benefits...

  • Let Inga Tell You: A tale too common to parents

    Let Inga Tell You: A tale too common to parents

    LET INGA TELL YOU: Ever since I could put pen to paper, I've been a diary and journal writer, which is actually the sum total of my writing training, along with a lifetime of letter writing. Every once in a while, I go back through journals to see what I wrote and often find stories about experiences...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Eat your heart out, NSA

    Let Inga Tell You: Eat your heart out, NSA

    LET INGA TELL YOU: People think telephone surveillance is a new thing but then, they're not old enough to have grown up with a party line. Eat your heart out, NSA. Sixty years ago, the entire country was listening in on each other's phone conversations. Back in the Pleistocene Era of telephonics,...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Dating among the elderly

    Let Inga Tell You: Dating among the elderly

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When you see a newspaper photo of happy nonagenarians at their wedding, the first reaction (aside from being happy for them, and wondering what their scheming children think) is "Are they really going to 'do it'?" Society in general has a true aversion to the concept of old-people...

  • Let Inga Tell You: The year of the dog

    Let Inga Tell You: The year of the dog

    LET INGA TELL YOU: When we'll look back on 2016, I'm pretty sure we'll refer to it as The Year of the Dog. The first two months of the year were spent in a constant battle to solve the ever-more-severe allergy issues of our beloved English bulldog, Winston. Just when it looked like we were making...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Please stop beeping

    Let Inga Tell You: Please stop beeping

    I’m trying to decide when our lives became controlled by beeps. When I was growing up, I don’t remember anything that beeped. Now I can’t think of anything that doesn’t. And frankly, it’s starting to drive me a little crazy. If you’ve got a Smartphone, you know the difference between the text message...

  • Let Inga Tell You: Living in the Twilight Zone

    Let Inga Tell You: Living in the Twilight Zone

    — LET INGA TELL YOU: I’ve written before about living in a house in the Twilight Zone. I’m still trying to figure out if we’d have to disclose this if we ever sell. The house was built in 1947, so you’d think the city would have caught on by now that it’s here. But several city databases — Environmental...

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