Conversing with scammers

Dear Heloise, I was just reading your column with the letter from Frank and Carol H. of Milford, Delaware about fraudulent calls. I’m 84 and retired, and these calls are a nice respite from TV. The way I deal with it is that after the obligatory “hello” to all their questions, I simply answer them with questions of my own. Usually my first question is “Where are you calling from?” To everything they say, I ask about the weather, or if there’s an in and out burger, or some other unrelated question until they hang up. This takes up their time and there is one less person they are trying to scam. — Steve G., via email


Dear Heloise: For Eric, who hates salads, it can be so hard to eat food you don’t like, no matter how much logic (love-based) goes into preparing his plate. To make your veggies tastier, help your mom roast them.

Participating in cooking brings you closer to food and can help you find the best way to consume it. Many veggies can be seasoned and roasted to enhance the flavor and texture of the salad — broccoli, all types of squash, carrots, onions, tomatoes, green beans… even cabbage can be roasted and tossed in with raw leafy greens.

To roast most vegetables, place a baking sheet in the oven and preheat to 450 F. Cut the veggies of your choice into 1- to 2-inch chunks and toss in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, and pepper (garlic powder). it is optional). Spread the vegetables out on the preheated sheet pan and sauté for 15 to 20 minutes or until browned, however you like. I like to turn things halfway through cooking, but it’s not strictly necessary.

Allow the veggies to cool for five minutes before tossing them into the veggies. I usually find that the oiled, seasoned veggies coat the veggies enough that I don’t need salad dressing. But you can add an extra drizzle of olive oil for flavor. You don’t have to suffer for your health when you learn how to cook delicious food. Much luck! – Cindy L., Los Angeles


Dear Heloise: Instead of using paper towels or coffee filters to keep food from splattering in your microwave, you can buy reusable, inexpensive covers just about anywhere — at Target, Walmart, Kohl’s, or Amazon. Paper items made from trees add to landfill. We should all try to follow the 3 Rs – reduce, reuse, recycle – wherever possible. I read your column in the Ventura County Star every day. Peace! — Lilith, Ventura, California


Dear Heloise: Another simple solution to protecting pet beds is to use a fitted sheet. This works well for a range of sizes. You can buy them at thrift stores, flea markets, etc. Buy two or more. Just throw the dirty one in the wash and replace it with another one. — Juanita C. Dungan, Lafayette, Louisiana

Send a money- or time-saving notice to Heloise, PO Box 795001, San Antonio, TX 78279-5001, or fax it to 1-210-HELOISE, or email it to I cannot answer your letter personally, but will use the best guidance I have received in my column.

(c)2023 by King Features Syndicate Inc.

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