I could be the only one who’s noticed this phenomenon, but after a quarter of a century of casual-to-serious skygrazing I doubt it.
Every time I look to the heavens, the first constellation I see is Cassiopeia. It doesn’t matter whether I’m facing north or south, or whether I’m scanning the horizon or the celestial zenith. It makes no difference whether I’m in Barrie, Ontario — which at 44 1/2 degrees north latitude is as close to the North Pole as I’ve ever been — or Miami, which at 25 3/4 degrees north latitude is as far south as I’ve stood. (With respect to the latter, the most prominent lights are — thanks to overpopulation and strip-mall-osis — of the automatic-weapons variety anyway.) All that seems to be required is that it’s dark enough to pick out the five stars forming the “W”-shaped constellation that allegedly represents a throne.
Interesting fact: Were one to travel to the Alpha Centauri system, which is 4.4 light-years away, Cassiopeia would look more or less the same, except that our own sun would be a 0.5-magnitude star to the left of the “W” (beside and below Epsilon Cassiopeiae in the picture above), making it more of a…celestial sawtooth? A “/W”? Who knows; if Earthlings are — or were, in pre-soup-ladle times — deranged enough to see a bear in Ursa Major, putative beings on putative planets orbiting any of the three stars we call Alpha Centauri might still call this Cassiopeia-on-steroids a throne, or “Charlie Brown’s shirt,” or Hakeem Olajuwon.
Anyway, at this point I’m surely a victim of my own selection bias: When I look up and see something other than Cassiopeia first, I likely don’t remember looking, but the positives stick in my mind. I’m curious as to whether anyone else has noticed this, be it with the Big C or another constellation.