Slashdot alerted me to an odd article from last week on Taco Bell Programming. The odd thing about it, to me, is this aside about DevOps, "where system administrators start writing unit tests and other things to help the developers warm up to them...." Ted Dziuba's response is the, errr, opposite? "Taco Bell Programming is about developers knowing enough about Ops...."
Both of which sound pretty much the same to me. I've ranted about this before, but it boils down to this: we're all on the same side. Whether you are so small you don't have any dedicated sysadmins or DBAs, or so large that you've got a dedicated team of each: what you do impacts the operation of your game, and the operation of the game impacts you.
Work with other teams, get to know what they do (a good goal: know it well enough to be a useful sounding board), and keep talking to each other. If you're worried about the Operations staff poking into your development domain and swirling it around... maybe it's because there are problems, pressing to Ops but ignored by devs. Maybe you should get that fixed, and worry less about who fixed it. :-)
As for "Taco Bell Programming," or "using basic tools in surprising and clever ways:" sure, do it when it's feasible. Solve your problems simply if you can. And if you can't... well, then it's time to be a good programmer, isn't it?