Just an FYI, this general topic of ranges and strings has been
discussed extensively in the recent past:

http://groups.google.com/group/comp.lang.ruby/browse_thread/thread/cfc720a7a0313323/9d17db883a1d6100
http://groups.google.com/group/comp.lang.ruby/browse_thread/thread/2d6a59a136abce3d/ccf66936477e73a7

Ryan