in reply to Odd Database Behavior

If you are doing a SELECT COUNT(*), why are you using the rows() method. Just look at the query results.

UPDATE: Added code
my @row = $Statement->fetchrow_array; if ($row[0] > 0) { LogError("NICK_TAKEN"); return("-1"); }

Also, rows() doesn't always work when used with select statements.
From CPAN...
$rv = $sth->rows; Returns the number of rows affected by the last row affecting comm +and, or -1 if the number of rows is not known or not available. Generally, you can only rely on a row count after a non-SELECT exe +cute (for some specific operations like UPDATE and DELETE), or after +fetching all the rows of a SELECT statement. For SELECT statements, it is generally not possible to know how ma +ny rows will be returned except by fetching them all. Some drivers wi +ll return the number of rows the application has fetched so far, but +others may return -1 until all rows have been fetched. So use of the +rows method or $DBI::rows with SELECT statements is not recommended. One alternative method to get a row count for a SELECT is to execu +te a "SELECT COUNT(*) FROM ..." SQL statement with the same "..." as +your query and then fetch the row count from that.

- Tom