- Grounding it to a wall outlet does nothing; there is a grayish-black coating on the outside bell of the CRT (called Aquadag) and you will notice some type of metal spring or finger touching it - THIS is what you want to ground the wire to. But even more important the CRT is made of glass and it contains an extremely high vacuum. If it breaks it will implode and glass will go flying everywhere. I strongly recommend at least wearing safety glasses before handling it.
- Good answers; in wet or humid areas many times florescent fixtures are enclosed. Also, your bulbs may be dirty - when moistened by humidity it can form a short circuit around the bulb and keep it from striking (starting).