A kalabit is sort of like a poke except that with a kalabit, you withdraw your finger in a crooked position.
to touch with a fingertip
POKE – straight finger into target, straight finger out
KALABIT – touch pad of the finger into target (slightly burying into, but not too much), then withdrawing with finger in crooked position
A kalabit is performed quickly. It is used to call the target’s attention, and is more acceptable and common than a poke among Filipinos. It is not as brusque, but it can be annoying when done by certain people.
Why did you perform a “kalabit” on me?
Kalabitin mo siya.
Do a “kalabit” on him.
This is one among words that don’t have an exact equivalent in English like ulam, pikon, tampo, maarte and kulit.