Irresistible

Couple's 'Goodwill Date Night' goes viral

A Georgia woman whose photos of a “Goodwill Date Night” with her husband have gone viral said she hopes the idea inspires other couples to reconnect and find joy.

Noel Pauley, who lives in a small town outside of Atlanta, and her husband, Shane Pauley, started their date last Friday night with a stop at a local Goodwill store. Shane Pauley called his wife with the idea after a friend reminded him of the idea, which went viral in 2015 thanks to a Florida couple.

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The Pauleys' rules for the night included that they each had to each pick out the other’s outfit and could only spend $10 each. They had to pick a fake first name for their spouse and, once they left Goodwill, they had to pretend nothing had happened and their outfits were normal.

“Some couples may be nice to each other when picking out outfits, but Shane and I were not like that,” Noel Pauley, 29, told ABC News.

Noel, who is a social worker, said her strategy was to pick out as many plaid items as she could for her husband.

Shane Pauley, 31, chose multiple outfits for his wife, which led to the couple seeking help from Goodwill employees on what was the best-worst outfit.

“They were on board and had a good time with us, so that made it fun,” Noel Pauley said.

When Noel Pauley exited the dressing room in what she called a “lovely 1985 floral dress,” her husband’s reaction was, “Ethel, get your choir book and come on.”

“I looked like a little old lady that would be in the church choir,” said Noel Pauley, who took the name Ethel for the date, while Shane Pauley went by Roger.

The couple, who have a 5-month-old daughter, then went to dinner at a nearby Longhorn Steakhouse, where they did receive some strange glances.

“The hostess and servers, they would do a double take, but they were very professional,” Noel Pauley recalled. “The customers, you could tell they were waiting for us to get up so they could die laughing.”

Noel Pauley said she struggled more than her husband in keeping a straight face through it all.

The date night ended when they went to pick up their daughter from her godparents’ house, but the social media attention was just beginning.

Noel Pauley posted photos from her date with her husband on Facebook, where they have now been shared more than 440,000 times.


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