John, Most databases (including mysql, Oracle, db2, ...) use an owner name for the schema. When you do a query, the database tries to run the query on the schema for the id running. There are two ways to execute the query:
1) Use a fully qualified name (with schema owner) in your query directly. 2) Create a synonym to map the fully qualified name to the one word table name.
I favor #1 because it allows you to run the query as different users without having to change the synonym/alias.