"Please don't shave your beard off. We will take some photos together when I'm back home," Sivaprasad told his father on the phone from Rostock in Germany.
A month since then, another phone call ensued:
Father: "I'm going to shave. People are saying things on my face. More are talking behind my back too, I guess. What should I do?"
Sivaprasad: "Is your beard bothering you? If it's itching or something, shave it off. But if it's 'itching' those people, please keep it till I reach home."
Father was convinced.
When Sivaprasad reached home, he was stunned by his father's majestic white beard and moustache. Flattered, the dad considered being a 'freak'. What if I become a 'freak', the father asked his son. Soon, Sivaprasad shared photos of his father wearing riding attire and smoking a cigar on Facebook. Before long, the pictures went viral.
"In his 76 years of age, my dad wished to be a 'freak'. If I can't fulfil such simple desires for him, what is the point in being his son?" read the caption for those pictures, which were embraced by social media later.
Later, when people requested his original look, Sivaprasad uploaded his father's one-year-old pictures on Facebook, which again went viral. Those who 'itched' out of father's beard got a firm reply when it became viral, he says.
Sivaprasad, who hails from Kerala's Alappuzha district, is an engineer in the merchant navy in Germany.