“Eh why so kaypoh?”


kaypoh /gay-poh, ˈɡeɪpəʊ/ n. & a. [Hk. (?) 耆(老)  () old people + (?) 婆  the epithet of an old woman (Medhurst); Mand. (?)  over sixty years of age, very old + (?)  old woman(Chi.–Eng. Dict.)] Also kay pohkay-poh.  A. n. One who is nosy or prying; one who meddles in others’ affairs; a nosy-parker.  B. a. Nosy, prying.

Via – http://www.mysmu.edu/faculty/jacklee/singlish_K.htm#kaypoh


  • More commonly, a kaypoh is a busybody; we see these kinds of people a lot on the road; Slow traffic, caused not by accidents themselves, but by vigilant onlookers at the scene. Kaypohs also often gossip about others; however the kaypoh’s capacity for any talk or action vanishes when he/she become embroiled in the situation. http://therealsingapore.com/content/man-strips-mrt-train-and-touches-himself-front-female-passengers

Related words

Kayu, Kaylong

2 thoughts on ““Eh why so kaypoh?””

  1. We also use this phrase in Taiwanese, which is the same as a dialect from Southern province in China and Mandarin. It never occurred to me to think about the origin of the phrase though. Now I’m curious exactly from which dialect it hails. Personally I think the written form of it is based on the sound we make in Taiwanese since the dialect itself isn’t really a written language. 雞 pronounced in Taiwanese doesn’t sound as “Kay” as you spell it, instead it should be “Gue”, so that is my basis of the guess.

  2. Hello Lim Wei,
    Ok so I looked up another version of KayPoh.

    (Centroamérica) (Chile) (México) interfering; meddling!
    Comes with a little attitude when you are speaking about this person. It is literal but means alot!

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