The Inside Rail

Tom Law turned 50 Saturday.

In honor of the best thing to ever happen to The Saratoga Special, we give you the 50 reasons we like our friend, our rock, Tom Law. 

  1. He’s laid back but productive. We know plenty of laid-back people and they’re usually fun to be around but a lot of times, they’re not useful. Likeable, affable, non-confrontational, but lacking work ethic and responsibility. We’ve never known anyone who has more fun and gets more done. 
  2. He knows the best places to get the best craft beers and he always shares his best craft beers. 
  3. He occasionally comes up with free Red Sox tickets.
  4. His girlfriend, Cc. 
  5. He gives us a room in his house for the meet. 
  6. He writes faster than anybody better and he’s better than anybody faster. 
  7. He has a garden. 
  8. He took a blind cat named Raisin from his friend, Greg Charkoudian, because he couldn’t keep it anymore. Just took it, no questions asked, gave it a home. 
  9. He lets steeplechase trainer Jack Fisher park his BMW under the back-yard awning. 
  10. He sets up the coffee the night before. 
  11. He’s got good friends, from Charkoudian to Josh Cooper to Tim Molloy to Max Hodge to a band of bartenders, runners and pizza makers around town.
  12. He camps.
  13. He hikes.
  14. He composts.
  15. He thrives on deadlines. 
  16. A natural-born coach, he mentors our interns every summer, keeping the balance between teacher and boss, while developing the likes of Tiller, Jones, Gabby, Spivey, Fargo, Martin, Brennan, Blaze and so many others. 
  17. He coached youth soccer teams when he lived in Lexington. He does not have kids, but coached kids, once explaining, “I had some bad coaches. No kid should have a bad coach.”
  18. He took a shot with us in 2013. 
  19. He’s leading The Special’s 2021 handicapping challenge while devoting less time to it than any of his other duties. 
  20. He was here last year. 
  21. He stopped betting NYRA races after distribution-gate a few years back. With a new regime at the helm here, he bets again. 
  22. He volunteers his time. President of the Saratoga Stryders, the local running club. President of the National Turf Writers and Broadcasters Association. Ask and he’ll get involved. Oh, hell, you don’t even have to ask.
  23. No matter how fit, or unfit, no matter, if it’s sunny or raining, early or late, hot or cold, he will always go for a run.
  24. He inspired the 1,000 Mile Challenge this year.
  25. He won’t be disappointed in us if we don’t (we won’t) meet the 1,000 Mile Challenge this year.
  26. He wears a “Block or Charge” T-shirt to interview Todd Pletcher at his barn for Hall Talk but makes sure he covers it up with a raincoat. 
  27. He jiggles the toilet handle without prompting or complaining. 
  28. I once asked him to pick up a wanna-be exercise rider fresh off the plane from England who had landed at the bus depot, he found him a room and took him to the grocery = 
  29. He runs with “Deadline Dinners” and rallies support from 9 Miles East and Flatbread Social.
  30. He rides a bike, pantleg in his sock. 
  31. He tapes hand-drawn thank you notes from his niece to his refrigerator. 
  32. He recycles his running shoes at the best running store in town, iRun Local. 
  33. He survived nine years of bureaucracy at his last gig – and still likes to work and loves the game.
  34. He laughs at himself. 
  35. He bought a portable wardrobes for the office. There are more sport coats and ties at the office than at our houses. 
  36. His favorite horse is Whitmore. 
  37. He once painted his whole house.
  38. He advocates for the Green Trail, an interconnected greenway in Saratoga.
  39. When he finishes a Stable Tour, he sends a text to Joe and me, “Anvil lifted.”
  40. He always has trail mix stashed in his top desk drawer. 
  41. He takes out the garbage at night and takes in the cans in the morning.
  42. He worked for Bill Meissner at Fasig-Tipton. 
  43. Everyone at Fasig-Tipton likes him. 
  44. His sister loves him. 
  45. Once a season, after I’ve blown another deadline, he walks to my office window, holds up a sign that reads, “Land the Plane,” and walks away. 
  46. They call him the Law Man. 
  47. He wrote 6,316 words for the first issue this summer. 
  48. He didn’t winge about writing 6,316 words.
  49. He makes The Special a better newspaper. 
  50. He makes the world a better place.

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