I've been a fan of fluorescent lights since 1972 when we moved into our ranch house out at Pottsville. We had fluorescent lights put into the living room, the kitchen, and the large den that we had built (it was expanded converted from an old back porch). They were great! The two fixtures in the den -- each with four four-foot long bulbs -- produced a lot of warm, pleasant light, but they didn't glare like incandescents and we rarely had to change them out. I didn't even know how much less electrical power they used, we didn't think about that kind of stuff. As time went by I noticed other people never seemed to catch on, nobody else was putting these lights into their homes. As near as I can figure, the main reason was because of bad experiences people had with fluorescents in schools, workplaces and stores. It's not too uncommon to walk into a store and see "blue and yellow" mismatched fluorescents with one or two of them flickering madly (and maddeningly). I heard comments from people who simply hated fluorescent lights because of the flickering and would never dream of putting them in their home. Here's what they didn't get: A flickering fluorescent light is one that's burning out. It needs to be replaced. If you replace them as soon as they start flickering, there is no problem. They last a long time, so they don't need replacement often. Fluorescents also come in varying color temperatures. I prefer the cooler (more yellowish) lights, but what's really important is to not mix them. If you do, then the contrast between the colors becomes very obvious and looks tacky. After some years "compact fluorescent" (CF) bulbs that could screw into a standard incandescent socket started to appear. These were touted as a painless way to save energy. I had some real problems with the early models of these. They were very large and heavy, which meant they wouldn't actually fit into many places or light fixtures where incandescent bulbs could go. They weren't available in higher outputs, the brightest ones being -- optimistically -- equivalent to a 60 watt bulb. If you needed to replace a 100 or 150 watt bulb you were out of luck. The color quality of the light produced wasn't great. Finally, probably the biggest drawback of all, they didn't immediately come on when you flipped the switch. There was a second or two delay with a flash and a pop or two as the light finally came on. A lot of people tried them and got a bad impression. My argument was, why not install the standard and well-proven fluorescent fixtures with two-foot or four-foot tubes? It doesn't cost that much to change out a light fixture, seriously! CFs have been on the market for a while now, and it's amazing to see how they've improved in every respect. The newer ones light up instantly. They're available in a full range of wattages. The color quality is often better than incandescent lights. They've also become much smaller and lighter weight, though there are still some fixtures around that they won't fit. A more general problem with CFs is that they are expensive. Yes, you would eventually recover the cost and actually save money on your electric bill -- but spending more now to save money later is something that doesn't come naturally to a lot of people. My bathroom had a fixture that holds four incandescent bulbs. I wasn't too worried about energy consumption since I don't leave the bathroom light on all the time -- but the bulbs burned out pretty often and changing them was a nuisance. The way it was designed, there was no possible way to fit even the newer CF bulbs. So, I put up with it until recently when I had the whole bathroom remodeled. The workmen took out the ancient fixture and put in a new one with three bulbs. These were arranged so the bulbs point straight out from the wall with no shade or covering. The bare bulbs looked a bit harsh, but now there was nothing to prevent me from using CFs. I went to the local hardware store, but they didn't have much to choose from. They had some 15 watt (60 watt equivalent) GE bulbs on sale: original price $15.50, new price $2.00. Wait. . . Surely that couldn't be right? It turned out, these were the early CFs that had been on the shelf for years and years and are now completely outdated. For $6 my bathroom problem was solved. The new fixture can handle the size and weight with no problem, and three of them ganged together provide adequate light. They each have a built-in globe diffuser, so the light is much less harsh. The only annoyance is the delay and then flashing when I flip the light switch: they put on quite a show. I'm going to try living with it.