According to the New York Times, pole-dancing parties are a big thing these days. Say goodbye to Tupperware, hello pole. The mind boggles.

This intimate Friday-night soiree, where spinach dip and crudités were served and Ms. Cottam sent guests home with homemade banana muffins for their families, was for no particular occasion. She did not charge for the lesson, but had poles — spring-loaded and adjustable from 8 to 10 feet — for sale ($450), as well as a variety of feathered or rhinestone platform shoes ($19.99 and up).

Though Ms. Cottam operates independently, more than 350 pole-dance instructors in 34 states and Canada have signed up since August 2006 with an international company, EPM EmpowerNet, to run their own businesses in the model of Tupperware or Avon sales. The company provides DVDs that teach the instructors dance moves, pole safety and party etiquette, and sells them the equipment; they keep the fees they charge each participant — $25 to $30 in this area — plus any margin on the poles.

Okay, so I'm speechless. 🙂 You stick a spring-loaded pole in your living room and pretend to be a stripper. Wow. I guess it could spice up the ol' relationship a bit. All I can think of are the inevitable mishaps that could spring, ahem, from spring-loaded poles wedged against ceiling and floor. Thoughts?