Went through most of my MySQL calls (I used mod_perl on linux).

Cleaned up everything, removed unnecessary queries, made MySQL do all
joins (including outer joins), instead of doing sub-searches on my
part, replaced constructs such as:

if select count(*) > 0
then update
else insert

with INSERT ... ON DUPLICATE KEY UPDATE etc.

The result is a cool 3-4x speedup on most pages, as measured by Apache
Bench (ab).

So... it pays to look at database usage closely!

MANY THANKS TO ALL FOR YOUR RECENT SUGGESTIONS!!!

i