it shouldn't matter how the bulb is connected, or the ballast for that matter, as AC
really has no polarity.
but it does have a HOT and a NEUTRAL, hot = incoming power, neutral = returning power
if the power cord you're using to go to the wall is not color coded (most modern cords should be), then you'll want find out which prong (out of the 3) is the hot terminal.
putting in a fuse is real easy - just go to radio shack and ask for an inline fuse holder and some wire nuts, and of course the proper amp fuse for your ballast. then you just connect one end of the holder to your ballast wire and the other end to your electrical cord wire, and you're all set.