Name: Naomi Morris Omori
Studies at: St Anne’s College, Oxford (Third year English student)
Likes: Jane Austen, skiing and drama
Dislikes: Kanji, mustard and being told that she looks twelve
INSIDE PERSPECTIVE: NAOMI’S TAKE ON NAOMI
Naomi has spent approximately half her life in each home country. Since she has lived in many places in the UK however, she regards Tokyo, her birthplace, as her childhood home. She attended the British School in Tokyo for an enjoyable seven years. French and Japanese were introduced to her in school aged seven, but regretfully she feels that her French is probably better than her Japanese (mainly because they have 26 letters in their alphabet, not 3000+). Bridging two cultures provides endless colourful moments for Naomi. Although she appreciates being viewed as average in height in Japan, she finds being shown sceptically to the back of the shoe store for the ‘big feet’ section hilarious, and having her ID scrutinised for her age in the UK frustrating. Naomi left Tokyo to go to boarding school in the UK at the age of twelve. She appreciated her bicultural upbringing even more, becoming ‘International Mentor’ for Japanese students, coming to ‘International Days’ dressed in kimonos and forming a lifelong friendship with her Japanese sensei. Drawn to St Anne’s College at Oxford by the eclectic architecture of Victorian bricks and concrete blocks, (true to her degree subject) she pretentiously ponders upon how these buildings are symbolic for her life experiences to date.
OUTSIDE PERSPECTIVE: TARO’S TAKE ON NAOMI
Naomi Morris Omori is inordinately proud of her name. According to her, it’s “awesome”. When pressed for a reason she says, “It reflects who I am and I’m awesome”. Mind you, she also once described Wagamama’s as “awesome” too – an unfortunate moment she has only grudgingly allowed to be included in this biography. Nevertheless, we are prompted to wonder how her name could somehow reflect who she is.
Perhaps she means etymologically: Naomi means “modest and beautiful”; Morris is from Mauritius, the Roman saint of infantry soldiers; Omori is a “big forest”. Presumably, (hopefully) she isn’t talking about Omori. The only other possibility then, is Morris. She is often told that she walks like a Japanese schoolgirl – perhaps she means how she then over-compensates by trying to walk like a Roman foot-soldier. She thinks that she’s a good poet. Maybe she believes the murmuring m’s and r’s or rhyming i’s of her name are proof she has poetry in her soul.
Perhaps it is the format of her surname. Is the promotion of her mother’s name before her father’s (her father is the Japanese one) symbolic of her rejection of Japan’s patriarchy? Does the omission of a hyphen between them reflect the gaping chasm of missing identity between the Japanese and English halves of her aching heart?
“This is a stupid way to introduce me,” she says. Agreed. But with a background in journalism and an English Literature degree in progress at Oxford, irresponsibly tenuous speculation about minor and irrelevant details seems quite fitting; and good preparation for the content of her blog posts. She also does drama from time to time and enjoys cutting parsley.