I used an alternate tool called Siege to test my app and phpmyadmin. Siege turned out to be far closer to my profiling then ab (Apache Benchmark) tool was. Maybe i'm not using it right... I haven't even looked at the docs. Never the less phpmyadmin is very slow, much slower then my app which can handle around 200 persistent connections in vbox before becoming a little unstable.
The nice thing about siege is that I can use it to simulate peak load instead of handling a set number of users.