On the bottom of the speedometer on a Nissan Murano SUV, there’s a digital display called the trip computer. As you can guess, it lists things such as mileage, fuel economy, time since last set, and even temperature. You toggle through those options.
My wife and I have Muranos. One day she came home and said her trip-computer display had gone dark. We immediately suspected that a button or something got pushed accidentally. Failing to confirm this theory, we considered taking it in to the shop.
But then, magically, the digital readouts returned. That was the case for a few days, before they went out again. This happened a couple more times before we gave up the ghost and brought it in to the shop that typically services our cars. Note that it wasn’t a Nissan shop.
The mechanic said he’d look into it, and I gave him my number since, according to my wife, I speak “mechanic.” As a matter of fact, I’m multilingual — because if you take into account which servicemen she won’t talk to, I must also speak plumber, electrician, mason, landscaper, etc. … She can speak painter, interior decorator, and banker, along with their various dialects and subtongues.
Anyway, the mechanic called me to say that the dimmer switch was set to minimum, and when they adjusted it, the display was fine. We were dubious.
We picked up the car and discovered that the problem was not fixed. The speedometer numbers were brighter, but the trip computer was still dark — even at the highest-brightness setting.
We needed a Nissan mechanic.
When we picked up the car from our mechanic, he did say that if the problem persisted, it would require an expensive fix. He called it a cluster. Seeing that there were women in the waiting room, my wife and I assumed he was being polite by leaving off the f**k descriptor at the end of cluster.
My wife and I understand that language.
Back home, before scheduling an appointment with a Nissan service center, we Googled potential problems with the trip computer display. There can be many causes, but one possibility is a fault in the “cluster.” Just the word cluster. It’s apparently the technical name for a bunch of wires and circuit boards.
Boy, did we laugh. But then we thought: what does our errant interpretation say about us?