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| Off-Kilter

Really Deal With Your Problems: Believe You're a Movie Character

May 28, 1999|ROY RIVENBURG

Mesmerizing Movies: A Miami hypnotherapist is conducting " 'Star Wars' regressions," in which people are hypnotized to feel like they are a character in the film.

You are getting sleepy . . . sleepy . . . falling deeply asleep and drifting toward a galaxy far, far away. Now you are Anakin Skywalker, surrounded by Ewoks, robots and--in the distance--darkened theaters full of Americans who need to get a life.

Hypnotist Wes Patterson charges $100 an hour for the sessions, which he claims can help clients confront phobias and other problems. For example, if you are afraid of taking risks, Patterson says you can overcome the fear by experiencing a light-saber battle or destroying the Death Star.

He also can hypnotize people into thinking they're characters in other films, including "Titanic" (for what, a fear of drowning while listening to Celine Dion?) and "Indiana Jones" (perhaps to conquer a phobia of giant boulders).

After contemplating the cinematic possibilities, we decided--for purely scientific and journalistic purposes--to become a character in the movie "Booty Call."

Lunatic Fringe Bureau: A Norwegian woman is using her cleavage to incubate a bird's egg, according to media reports.

Quote of the Day: Dan Quayle disease continues its insidious spread among the nation's political elite. The latest victim is Oakland Mayor Jerry Brown, who was discussing crime statistics on a Bay Area TV show and made the following observation, according to the San Francisco Chronicle: "When you talk to the average person, they're not victims of homicide."

Well, not unless they've been hypnotized to become James Caan in "The Godfather."

waste-of-time.com: What a boon the Internet is. We can't imagine life without instant computer access to such Web sites as:

* http://greatlakes.greencafe.com, where you can eavesdrop on snotty French waiters as they curse out customers at a Paris cafe.

* http://phobe.com/furby/, which displays photos of Furby "autopsies."

* Amazon.com, which just auctioned such treasures as the fake cremated ashes of Heather Locklear's character on "Melrose Place" (suggested price: $610) and the ultrasound picture of a fictional "Melrose" baby ($200).

Last but not least is MessiahCam (http://www.olivetree.org/registra.htm), which allows computer users to watch for the Second Coming via a camera posted near Jerusalem's Golden Gate. According to biblical tradition, the gate will remain sealed until the Messiah arrives.

Tax Dollars at Work Report: The average amount of money that the U.S. spends on intelligence each day is $73 million, according to Harper's magazine. No breakdown on how much of that goes toward map-making.

Best Supermarket Tabloid Headline: "Mystery Tot Raised by Ants!" (Weekly World News)

Known as Pedro the Ant Boy, he reportedly loves to play in the dirt and dig tunnels. He also communicates with his insect mentors by waving his arms over his head like antennae.

Unpaid Informants: Wireless Flash News Service, Reuters, Scott Martelle, Todd Everett, London Telegraph. Off-Kilter's e-mail address is roy.rivenburg@latimes.com. Off-Kilter runs Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. But under hypnosis, we've experienced what it would feel like to have the column appear on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

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