This one is for future-Sam, the next time I spend 20 minutes searching Google for a solution to this problem.
Smart quotes convert neutral quotation marks to typographic quotation marks automagically. They can be a real pain in some applications, when your text is displayed to other users in a different font (mIRC, for example).
Non-smart, neutral, double quotes look like "this."
Smart, typographic, double quotes look like “this.”
Applications that use Microsoft Rich Edit controls allow you to turn smart quotes on or off with CTRL-SHIFT-' (that’s a neutral single quote).
Hopefully I won’t get laughed at in IRC next time I manage to mash the keyboard enough to turn smart quotes on.