'The other things', Kennedy speech. Rice Stadium.

Hello good people, today seems as appropriate time as any to discuss President Kennedy’s ‘We choose to go to the Moon’ speech’
Specifically, in itallics: ‘We choose to go to the Moon, we choose to go to the Moon, (app[lause), we choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things not because they are easy but because they are hard.’

‘The other things’?
I realise that his administration would have have had a number of problems to address, but are there any specific issues he was talking about?
By the by I always thought Gore Vidal was a little harsh on JFK but I suspect that’s a matter for another time.

The other things are climbing the highest mountain, flying across the Atlantic 35 years earlier, and playing Texas (if you’re Rice).

Here’s the full text of the speech. Nothing about specific policies to his administration, other than going to the moon.

As for the relevant passage from the speech:

If you go to Rice football games, you’ll have heard this part of the speech during team introductions.

The previous paragraph in Kennedy’s speech (http://er.jsc.nasa.gov/seh/ricetalk.htm) reads

"There is no strife, no prejudice, no national conflict in outer space as yet. Its hazards are hostile to us all. Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation many never come again. But why, some say, the moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas? "

So “the other things” are “climbing the highest mountain, flying the Atlantic, and playing Texas”.

‘We choose’ not we have chosen methinks, so Lindbergh, who may have been an anathema to JFK!
I’ve only been to the East coast of the US so I know little about the Lone Star state and the Rice Stadium, but listening to the speech again it does strike as so well written and delivered that it was to good to have been off the cuff, thinks Churchill’s impromtu declarations.

Aprops of nothing Sir Patrick Moore, English astronomer, interviewed Orville Wright, Chuck Yaeger and Neil Armstrong and still presents the longest running tv show, The sky at night.

“I believe that this nation should commit itself to achieving the goal, before this decade is out, of seeing Rice beat Texas and go on to win the Cotton Bowl.”

While he may have had a short conversation with Orville Wright, it’s not like he “interviewed” him.

Playing Texas doesn’t happen anymore since the breakup of the SWC. Rice did beat A&M in one of the last games before the breakup. The Rice fans went on a rampage and tore up the turf of the field and then drank every keg dry at all the bars on Morningside and University.

They still have the Bayou Bucket matchup against University of Houston though.

And WTF happened to the awesome progressive Texas I grew up in? We had JFK making all his good speeches here, though I have to admit he got killed here too. We had The Strange Demise of Jim Crow. The Old South was gone. We were badass, and then somehow Richards lost to W and we became a joke. I want my state back.

Oh, ok. that makes sense. I’ve always wondered about his use of that phrase, it just sounds so clunky and off the cuff, like he lost his place in his speech or something…