I'm a mechanical (mecha-nickel) engineer and not an electrical engineer, so please don't kill me for asking: In a fluorescent light the high voltage potential between each end of the light strips the electrons from the mercury gas which ultimamately generates UV light, etc., etc. My question is this: Why don't the remaining positively charged mercury ions rush to the negative pole at the one end of the flourescent light? Perhaps they do--or try to--but becuase it's alternating current the poor mercury ions can't decide which way to go. Please don't tell me that that's the answer because that's such a lame explanation. Thanks!