One of my friends (B.B.) has a favorite saying that I particularly like: Never assume malice when incompetence will suffice.
I suppose it's a variation of Occam's Razor for graduate school / bureaucracies. I've been on both ends of this -- being dissed by faculty and not knowing why, and now being a faculty member who is swamped by work and doesn't always get back to things as quickly as she should. Sigh.
Other favorite sayings?