Perhaps there is a subtle message being sent from the Barcelona Olympics to which Americans should pay special attention. It goes beyond athletics and creeps into education and preparation.
Repeatedly in recent days, we have seen upsets of U.S. performers who were supposed to be eminent in their respective fields. Competition at the world level, we are reminded once again, is a far cry from in-house ``battling for the gold'' in the States. There is a vast difference in performing at home and going against the world, and our lack of medals in Spain is a grim reminder.
Same for education, we should remember.
Too often, we get caught up in making our school systems the best in the state, the region or the nation. We need also to be thinking more about battling with the rest of the world. With our shrinking globe, our people increasingly will be facing off with the best minds from other nations.
And unless Americans get better-educated, better-trained and better-motivated than they have been in the past two decades, they, too, are going to be surprised about the number of ``medals'' they miss after they figured they had them in the bag.