10 Questions with Laurie Blake

Tell us one thing about you that the audience won’t already know.

I don’t know. I think there’s probably nothing I want to reveal that they don’t already know… They don’t know that I went to Edenham High School in Croydon. There you go! (Laughs)

Tell us the most annoying habit you or any of your NRB teammates have. 

I don’t think anyone has a really annoying habit in person. Dom has a terrible habit of doing his Wim Hof breathing through his nose directly onto the microphones. That can be pretty annoying when filming. But honestly, no one has any properly annoying habits.

What’s been your favourite game to play on NRB and why?

Ooh, that’s tricky. Whenever I think about what game I would love to play again, it’s always Hit the Silk. It’s a game about jumping out of a plane. You’ve all done a heist there’s loads of money on the plane. Everyone needs to jump out of the plane but there aren’t enough parachutes. The whole game is negotiating with each other to work out who has money and who has parachutes, and making really temporary alliances while the people who don’t have parachutes or money attempt to f**k you over, trying to get hold of a parachute or enough money so that they’re integral to the mission. So it’s like pure negotiation with a little bit of card play to activate certain powers and stuff. It’s one of those games that really works on NRB because it forces everyone into weird conversations and forces people into confrontation. I think that’s what people like about NRB – our willingness to shout at each other! 

If your personality were a board game, which one would it be and why?

I feel like the obvious answer for people is just Blood Rage because that would be playing into my character on the channel previously. But I think my actual personality is fairly ordered. I think something about organisation would be more in line with my personality. Maybe Decorum because it’s about putting things in the correct places, but also about being passive aggressive when that doesn’t happen. That’s probably most like me.

If one of your parents was a clown, would that make them scarier or more approachable?

Well, the problem is, if one of your parents was a clown, you would obviously be half-clown which would change your perspective of clowns generally. Like, if one of my parents was a clown and I was a full human (because we all know clowns aren’t human!) I would then be afraid of my parents, I think. However, if I was also half-clown, that would be like being a half-demon, or cambion, or succubus or something. I probably wouldn’t be afraid of my dad then. But yeah, in a world in which one of my parents was a clown and I wasn’t half-clown, I would be very afraid because clowns are terrifying.

Have you ever considered cheating at a board game and if so, what was your self-justification? 

No, I haven’t. I think cheating in board games, and in general, just removes the fun. I don’t know why people feel the need to do it. What joy could you possibly get from cheating? You know you’ve cheated, you know your victory is invalid. I think the psychological driver for cheating in games is to save face – you don’t want to appear stupid, you don’t want to appear like a loser, whatever it might be. But I think that’s part of what makes games, board gaming in particular, enjoyable. You’re playing with your friends. It shouldn’t matter who wins or who loses. It’s all about the experience. It’s the same with video games. Even if you find a cheat code to get around a particularly difficult bit, there’s always that little bit in the back of your mind where you think, “I didn’t actually overcome it with skill, I just bullied my way through the moment.” You could just focus on learning the skill and get better at the game so that when you do win, you get to enjoy a real sense of achievement. That’s one of the biggest things about cheating – if you cheat, you never learn to win.

There’s a rumour that if NRB had a legitimate Royal Rumble contest, with no holds barred, you would win. Do you agree or disagree and why?

Well, it’s not a rumour. It’s a fact (laughs)! I don’t know, a Royal Rumble is tricky. There are a lot of variables involved. Someone could be sneaky, you know? We have a lot of sneaky people on the roster. My back could be turned for a moment and then suddenly I’m tipped out. It’s not necessarily about who is the strongest, the most handsome, or the most glorious because then I’d obviously win. From the moment I walked in, I’d have a target on my back because everyone would know I was the favourite to win. It’s kind of like board games. You never want to get out too far in front in the early going because then you can never make progress. You suddenly become a target for everyone. The people who streak ahead in the first two turns never win the game because everyone turns on them. You want to be lurking around in the middle of the pack and then you spring your trap at the end of the game. That’s how you’d win a Royal Rumble – appear meek and win at the end.

If your NRB teammates were vegetables, what would they be and why? 

Rosie would obviously be rosy potatoes. Blair would be broccoli. What would Dom Allen be…? Something scary. Maybe a turnip. They’re kind of creepy. Sullivan…What’s the most giggly vegetable? Maybe he’s just pepper or something. A sweet little pepper prince. As a team, I’d say they’d be one of those nice little selection boxes you get at Tesco to make a roast dinner.

What’s your favourite joke of all time and why?

I had a mate who said he had a small red flower in place of genitalia – It’s poppycock, I say!