Application Controller Errors

Hello,
I am just curious as to why I can't put the following code in the
application controller:

if session[:date2use]
else
  @get_latestbill = Prov.connection.select_all("
  SELECT
    prov_bills.bill_cycle_date AS cd
  FROM prov_bills
  ORDER BY bill_cycle_date DESC
  LIMIT 1")
  @latestbill = @get_latestbill.to_s.slice(2,10)
  session[:date2use] = @latestbill
end

It gives me a "500 Internal Server Error Content-Type: text/html" error.
However, when I use it within actions in my other controllers, it works
perfectly. It would be very helpful in my app if I can use this in my
Application Controller...

Any ideas?

Thanks,
- Jeff Miller

Is this inside a method at all? or just in the class?

I'm not sure about ruby, but in most Oo languages you can only put
declarations in a class. You can't put in code like that... you'd put
that in an initialize method or something.

Could you maybe clarify where/how you're using the code?

Also, why are you using the connection directly? That code looks like
it could be re-written as an active record find statement really
easily:

unless session[:date2use]
  session[:date2use] = Prov.find(:all, :order =>
"bill_cycle_date").first.bill_cycle_date.slice(2,10)
end

=> this code might not be error free, i just typed it here...