So I replaced the bulbs again...and a few weeks later, the other pair of bulbs in the fixture went out. This time it was the ballast, and there was no way I could afford (a) a new one, or (b) an electrician, or (c) a new fixture.
It turns out, ballasts are really not that expensive, once I checked. After some pretty epic procrastination (second only to how long it took me to fix the dryer vent in the laundry room), I bought a ballast this week, and Wednesday night my boyfriend and I unhooked the fixture, took it down, wired in the new ballast, put it up, and VOILA! Aziz, LIGHT!!!
WAAAAAA!! *heavenly music*
Kress wiring in his half of the ballast
I have to say, I love doing electrical work. It's so easy! Everything is color-coded! Pull one out, put the new one in. Pull the next one out, put the next new one back in. As long as the breaker's off and you've got a wiring diagram, you're golden. To which Kress reponds:
"But then you have to work on systems that are not color-coded, sometimes."
"No, I don't."
Not that I'm all Little Miss Electrician or anything - I've put up some ceiling fans and moved some light fixtures around, and that's it so far. This was my first fluorescent fixture. It wasn't any more complicated than the other fixtures I've done, but it was pretty physically taxing, what with all the reaching and pushing things up against the ceiling with one hand while trying to operate a screwdriver with the other AND trying not to drop stuff on your boyfriend's head at the same time.
Me: Man, after all that concentration and physical labor, I'm a bit wired.
Me: Sorry, that's all I could currently come up with
Kress: I get you, though. I think I need some meditation after all that work. Ohm!
Me: Ooh, good one. You'd have to be pretty bright to get that one.
Of course, I found out that my kitchen is waaaaay dirtier than I thought it was - I couldn't see in there! Egad, what a mess. I guess I know what I'm doing this weekend. Cleaning binge!!!