Please Pass the Soma

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LA Times Travel Editor Catharine Hamm recently advised flustered travelers how to keep their cool when dealing with the TSA at airports. “So I asked an expert,” she writes, “what steps travelers should take to stay calm and keep their IDs and wits about them.” Here’s what the “expert” told her:

Micah R. Sadigh, a psychology professor at Cedar Crest College in Allentown, Pa., notes we might become flustered when we “feel that our rights are infringed upon and … [by] the fact that we feel pushed around by forces over which we have little or no control.”

The antidote, he says, is daydreaming. “It reduces tension and helps us sublimate our frustrations into something very helpful.”

Professor Sadigh’s students will no doubt inherit the earth. Meanwhile, back at the airport,  the Flight from Reality is now taking off. Good advice for the Gulag, too — just watch what you daydream about, Comrade.

10:35 am on May 17, 2011