- Question what "success" means. Define what "success" means for you.
- Don't judge people by their business cards, i.e. don't make up your mind about how to treat people by their answer to "What do you do?"
- Just because someone doesn't fit your idea of success, they aren't a "loser." Randomness is a big factor in determining where people finally end up.
My first reactions as I heard both of these conversations was annoyance at the protagonist in one and admiration for the other. Both conversations stayed with me for a while, but it took me some time to realize that was unfair on my part to be annoyed at the person that I was annoyed at.
So about these conversations:
The first was between someone working there and a friend. She was sympathizing with her friend who'd be starting a new job leaving this place. "Oh, it's minimum wage again?", she said with concern in her voice. "Yes, but it's fine", said her friend. The job was closer to where she lived so she thought she'd make about the same and she might get home a little earlier to her daughter some evenings though the hours…