More on the “Warning sign”

More on the "Warning sign" - February 25, 2005
Paisa writes: Jao Mae can also mean female protective spirit, shaman, saint, or deity. Jao Por is the male counterpart. Many Thai cities (including Bangkok) have san jao por luk muang (shrine [of the] spirit [protecting the] city pillar). Here's a picture of one. Among the well-known Jao Por and Jao Mae in this sense are, jao mae guan im -- and jao por guan yu.


Earlier: Warning sign - February 22, 2005
Nils translates: "It's forbidden to urinate in this area. There's a san phra phum (spirit house) here, and the jao mae lives in the back." I am still not entirely sure what a "jao mae" is, though my girlfriend said it's something like a (female) owner/boss/influential person. (Thanks to Robert for some suggestions with the translation.)

(Photo: Nils)

Conor explains: A Jao Mae is a colloquial term equivalent to “head honcho” or something like that but only for females. There is an implication that the person has power through connections and influence (and perhaps crime) rather than education and a career path.
It’s rarely used in written language and here its effect is more amusing than intimidating...

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