It can be easily and legally obtained over the counter at almost any pet shop. It can be grown at home by users. Its effects are unpredictable. And some cats really, really love it.

We’re talking about catnip.

In this mock educational film, Catnip: Egress to Oblivion, the recreational plant of choice is examined by “scientists” and cats. While human scientists explain the “facts” about catnip, cats argue for its use. The Vimeo Staff Pick video recalls the feel of retro classroom films, which are so awkward and outdated they’re better suited to the projectors they once played on.

We know that different cats experience different reactions to catnip, but what we didn’t know was why — until today, when this catnip educational film was “unearthed” and brought to light.

The video wonders if felines who are just trying to be groovy are actually putting themselves at risk to spending the whole day rolling over and over in the nice, smooth, cool bath tub. (Cat: “This tub ÔǪ it’s so smooth, it’s so cool, it feels so nice on my tummy. My tummy ÔǪ it’s so soft ÔǪ I’m going to lick my fur forever.”)

We may not understand the appeal, but ask catnip’s fans — they’ll either drool on you, knead your thigh, give you a swat, or stare off into space, focused on some unseen bug.

Photo: Fashionable young cat eating rainbow ice cream by Shutterstock