Sure enough, Gears was the culprit on my end.
The primary benefit of Gears is that WordPress admin is made a bit quicker and easier on your server by using Gears.
Basically, Gears allows a Web server to offload some of the work running a Web site -- such as databases, processing of certain requests, etc. -- to your computer. This lessens the workload on the server and increases the response times you see.
Disabling Gears disables the "Turbo" features of WordPress. You may see slower performance on the administrative end as a result.