Well, my first reaction was " I want some of that".
So what you are saying is . . think of the histogram as "roughly" and experiment, but compensation adjusting for "over exposure" is an inappropriate "misunderstanding"? Seems therefore that the best approach is to Spot Meter in Manual Mode off something in the scene that is Neutral and assume the camera sensor sees that as 18% grey? I respect your knowledge greatly, but I have slipped further into the circle of confusion.