Thanks very much for the answers Phrogz, Ara and Gary!

I actually had it set up with class instance vars first, but they were 
so longish to access (self.class.method) that I thought there had to be 
a cleaner, more rubyish solution I was missing...

Also thanks for the google link, it was great help to me even though the 
query is pretty obvious, at least after you see it .. :)

As for the strange beavior af class variables:

- It seems ok to me that they are singleton in the whole inheritance 
tree; that's a design choice.

- But: Is it intended behaviour that they can be seen by class_variables 
but not used in class methods like in my example and here:

---> 
http://www.oreillynet.com/ruby/blog/2007/01/nubygems_dont_use_class_variab_1.html

- siemen