This message brought to you by…

It’s the weekend, and that means it’s time to launch a new weekly bit of fun around here. These red banners are plastered all over China, and Tianjin is no exception. Many are advertisements. Many others are propaganda. Well, not really propaganda – more like free advice, or moral exhortation, or polite, soft warnings. Often they’re put up by a neighbourhood committee (they’re apparently not directly political). Some are boring, some are interesting, some are pretty funny. We’ve collected a bunch already but only translated two so far; they don’t put pinyin on them and sometimes they can be really idiomatic, so it takes time to track down the translations. But they are in every neighbourhood and school, and I was getting tired of seeing them every day but not knowing what they say. We’ll try to post a new one every weekend.

yōu huà chéng qū huán jìng tí gāo shēng huó zhì liàng
“Beautify the city’s environment; raise the quality of life.”

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