Posted at 4:01 PM on November 3, 2008
by Sanden Totten
Lindsay is here to improve your mental health. (Photo by Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images)
Life is pretty scary these days. Global warming, a looming energy crisis, a sick economy . . . it's hard not to feel doomed. You could try improving your frame of mind through meditation, medication or therapy. Or you could just read up on celebrity gossip.
One experiment found that people believe airplanes are less likely to crash if a well respected celebrity is on board (despite plenty of examples to the contrary). Another showed that people who have death on the mind tend to think celebrities are more important and will be remembered longer than do people in a neutral group. The theory here is that when we are worried about the limits of our own mortality, we tend to put our faith in the celebrities we admire, imagining that our beliefs and values will live on in their legacy.