Surprise, I find old posts on my blog linked in strange places. For example, this forum thread [http://supforums.com/thread/78804005/international/sino.html]. Well if you ignore the advertising prompts and stuff that will raise hell with your ad-blocker and possibly your anti-virus, the thread on that forum makes an interesting read.
So if we wade through the stuff on that forum, we see a topic of discussion about Winston Sterzel. A bunch of posts that dispute the claims made by Sterzel and a few other bits and pieces. Well, I cannot say I disagree because having known the individual up close and personal, I can attest to the facts.
Look, don't get me wrong, I am not writing this to in any way deny Sterzel the fame he has achieved, but its really poor form to lie about some stuff, so let's get the record straight for the benefit of those folk overseas who have doubts, quite correctly:
1. The Nationality Claim
Sterzel has issues about where he comes from. Period! He has always felt uncomfortable about where he comes from. When I was friends with him for a time, he went to lengths to explain to us (us being me and another person in the anime club) where his family came from, as if he was trying to convince us he wasn't really a South African and by extension, superior or somewhat superior to stock standard South Africans.
The unfortunate truth is that he is a born and bred South African, born in Cape Town, whose parents moved to Johannesburg like many did, in the 1980s. His parents (Fred and Dawn Sterzel) are fully bona fide South Africans, and it might be true that their ancestry is Prussian or whatever he said it was (I can't remember that long ago), but still why go to all that trouble to convince me? Using similar logic I can then also go on a tirade about how I am Scottish, and prance around saying I am a Scot and imitate Suggs. Makes no difference to me!
I am as South African as they come. But he often claims he is British, or, tries to use the Queen's English and state he is a "Briton". What the actual fuck is that? The fact is, he is a South African expatriate, period! He does, unfortunately have a seething hatred for his country of birth and the ethnic majority (as does my brother). More about that below.
2. The truth about his education
The truth is, that he dropped out of high school. That means he did not get to Matric or Grade 12, and aside from some IT courses, he is, not as far as I know, a qualified developer, programmer, or anything. It is possible and probable that he did do some courses in China, but, now the claims of him being a doctor? I don't think so.
The claims of being a professor? LOLWUT? I do not think he has addressed the fact that he did not finish high school, and that has always been a chip on his shoulder. This was one of the things that kind of became an issue when I was friends with him. I am not highly educated by any stretch of the imagination and I make no secret of it, but at least I finished school, and I went all the way with college (I hold a qualification in electrical engineering).
As to why he dropped out of high school, I am 96% sure it is because of the girl he knocked up there and possibly the fine South African tradition of school bullying.
3. The truth about the firearm
Sterzel lived out in the sticks, basically a plot/smallholding in the middle of nowhere, close to an informal settlement known as Diepsloot. This is a place that often burns with protests and violence and for those overseas readers who read this- Diepsloot is basically a shanty town like you might see on Louis Theroux's BBC programmes, or perhaps on National Geographic/Discovery Channel.
So he had the pistol(s) for self-defence on the farm/smallholding but then something went wrong- he developed this whole delusion of grandeur about the firearms, the feeling of power they gave him, you know what I mean. He often portrays in conversation that the country of his birth is a war-torn shithole. That is not exactly true nor plausible. We have crime, and as per other parts of my blog, Johannesburg is pretty much on the same level as 8Mile in Detroit, but nothing approaching the war-torn, shithole that Sterzel claims it is.
The one thing you need to keep in mind with this guy is that he hates blacks, I have never met anyone in my life who hated them as much as he did. That was one of the things that put me off about him rather quickly.
4. The inferiority complex
Sterzel has, and it seems, still has, to this day, a serious inferiority complex. He has never answered me truthfully as to why he wears a suit every damn where he goes (Yes folks, he even made me wear one once and tried to make me wear them as a regular thing) but it is obviously because he feels that people "will respect him more" or whatever if they see him as the man in the suit! I have pondered this, considering that the following types of people wear suits all the time:
The first time my parents saw him, their immediate reaction was- "what the hell is this man wearing a suit for, especially in this weather?".
So, his inferiority complex extends to many facets of his life. I guess the vlogging was to fill the void but yeah, nothing surprises me anymore. After all I have even been up close and personal with furries so I think I have seen and met all sorts. Off the top of my head, another person, the alpha-furry Rakuen Growlithe has similar issues.
5. Why he really moved to China
He has said publicly, in the Chinese media, that he went there on a business trip and liked the place so much blah blah. Well yes, from what I understood, he did go there on a business trip. At the time he was self-employed.
I think in reality, faced with pressure back in SA (possibly w.r.t. to his daughter), and not being able to survive in a cut-throat IT industry in SA (he left SoReal to start his own IT business) he decided to move over to China. However, like many otaku, he has a clear preference for women of Asian descent and I think that was one of the drawcards for him. He did once remark that South African women were not suitable for him, but considering his choice of partner its not surprising that it never worked out.
6. Yes he really does like beer
Not much to be said about that from me as I am not a beer drinker, but he was always drinking the local fare at almost every social engagement when he was here in SA. Many photographs out there on the interwebs of him with beer in hand. He made zef culture cool before it became mainstream. (well at least before Jack Parow made it cool)