Ann Friedman

Ann Friedman is a columnist for New York magazine's website and for the Columbia Journalism Review. She also makes pie charts for The Hairpin and Los Angeles magazine. Her work has appeared in ELLE, Esquire, Newsweek, The Observer, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, and many other outlets. She lives in Los Angeles, but travels so often the best place to find her is online at

Recent Articles

Astronaut Sally Ride and the Burden of Being The First

America's woman space pioneer paid a price back on Earth.

When one of Sally Ride’s college friends inquired about her astrophysics major, Ride replied simply, “It’s about space.” Yet she claimed she didn’t always aspire to be an astronaut. The space program was still a closed-door club—inaccessible to her—when she went through school in the early 1970s. Ride was content to pursue an academic career until NASA undertook a nationwide effort to recruit women and let them know the club had room for more than white male fighter pilots. Then and only then did she start itching for orbit. Many biographers are tempted to characterize history-making Americans as born rebels who knew from the beginning that they wanted to storm the gates. What’s refreshing about Sally Ride: America’s First Woman in Space is that Lynn Sherr paints an evenhanded portrait of Ride as an iconic American whose accomplishments are inseparable from the second-wave feminist moment in which she reached them. The two women...

The State of Our Union in 28 GIFs

Hey, it's almost time to get started! Any minute now... Still clapping ... (Is the livestream stuck on a loop?) Aaaand, let's hear it for the middle class! We must keep promises we’ve already made so our young people aren't left holding the bag. “Deficit reduction alone is not an economic plan.” Everyone likes the idea of a smarter government. It's just vague enough to work! MACS MADE IN AMERICA! Would you like some new jobs, former manufacturing workers? Finally, a shout out to fighting climate change. Boehner is not amused. Preschool for every child in America! + Immigration reform sounds awesome! Until you realize that "back of the line” means ... never? HEY GIRL, how'd you like a paycheck fairness act? Yes, and a reauthorized Violence Against Women Act, too, thanks! It's time to tie the minimum wage to cost of living. Was that dainty clap sarcastic, John Boehner? Who doesn't love our brave men and women in the military? We've got the most serious generals...

Fired Up, Ready to GIF

(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Swing state voters, to themselves Women of America, to each other Women of America, to Republicans California, to other states Minnesota, Maine, Maryland, and Washington, to anti-gay marriage measures Mitt, to America Obama, to America Hillary, to 2016

GIF Out the Vote

Sarah Palin abandons her bus tour after no one pays attention. Michele Bachmann wins the Ames straw poll. Santorum just can't get away from Dan Savage's definition of his name. Romney, the presumptive nominee, gets ready for his close-up. "Corporations are people, my friend." Herman Cain and his advisers devise the 9-9-9 plan. Newt promises us a moon colony. "Oops!"—Rick Perry Romney campaign adviser outlines the Etch-a-Sketch strategy. Romney takes a gaffe-filled European tour. Mitt chooses Paul Ryan as his running mate. Most of America is confused. The Republican National Convention is delayed by a storm. Bill Clinton steals the show at the Democratic National Convention. Romney refuses to release his tax returns. Obama points out that wealthy Americans and business owners "built it" with some significant help from government. Romney is booed at the NAACP. Biden says the GOP will put Americans "back in chains." Todd Akin defines "legitimate rape." Mitt Romney calls 47 percent...

Horses and Bayonets and GIFs, Oh My!

The candidates agree we should build economies abroad. The candidates agree we should educate women. The candidates agree on how to handle Syria. The candidates agree we should build our economy at home. Like, they reeeeallly agree that the domestic economy is important. Wait, are we still watching the foreign policy debate? Is Bob Schieffer still here? Mitt refers us to his website to explain how he'd pay to grow the military. Horses and bayonets! Finally something worth tweeting about! But, uh, we need to be thinking about defending ourselves in space? The candidates agree they loooove Israel. Ok seriously, do they agree on everything? Crippling sanctions. Mitt loves crippling sanctions. Bob Schieffer asks, "What's the deal?" The candidates agree they both love drones. We all love teachers! Mitt says we should vote for him. Obama says we should vote for him. Thank god these debates are over.