This is a tradition I started this year in my family. We didn't have enough candles to express my age in the normal, counting fashion (I'm 23, as of yesterday). Besides, after 8 or 10 candles, the cake tends to get overburdened with fiery, dripping wax.

My solution to this was to express my age in binary instead, putting candles where a binary "1" would go, and not putting candles for binary "0"s. The high bit is pushed in the cake least, and so, is the tallest. The other candles are all pushed in slightly more, making them lower.

This way, I used four candles to express my age, like so:

    ,
    |   , , ,
   _|___|_|_|_
 ,(_'___'_'_'_).
 |  ^ ^ ^ ^ ^  |
 | 16 8 4 2 1  |   16 + 4 + 2 + 1 = 23
 |             |
,-\___________/-.
`---------------'

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