The existing host i'm with sent me the following info when I couldn't get a page with the following code to work:
PHP Code:
"...For the php script to work you need to inidicate the path to php in the first line of the scripts (#!/usr/local/bin/php)...."

Huh? This is a first for me (sure with Perl, or a shell script, but not PHP). Is there a way to set this value in an .htaccess file?

Oh, and my attempt at an .htaccess file of the following contents, resulted in a error 500:
php_value include_path ".:/home/<cust#>/includes/"
(both with and without quotes results in error 500) - still waiting to hear from 'em, but is this the only way to create an include path rule if I don't have access to php.ini?