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Donald (>):
> (*) If they are waiters in Chinese restaurants,
> recently arrived from China, not necessarily by
> that name, but "shi jie yu", or writing the
> corresponding ideographs on a napkin, usually
> gets a more knowledgeable response.

Would that be  (shi4 jie4 yu3)? It took me a few minutes to find,
but it seems like the reasonable candidate. The first two characters
mean "world", and the third is the commonly used character for
"language".

 http://www.unicode.org/cgi-bin/GetUnihanData.pl?codepoint=4E16
 http://www.unicode.org/cgi-bin/GetUnihanData.pl?codepoint=754C
 http://www.unicode.org/cgi-bin/GetUnihanData.pl?codepoint=8BED

Do you know if this expression is used to refer only to Esperanto, or
to IALs in general?

// Carl