Mac Meda Mexico Convention – Kegs, Drunks and Federales

Sometime in late 1966 another Mac Meda Convention, had to happen …  and it had to be the best one to date … but where could you go without the hassle of the cops?

“Well,  there is this funky and small bar and restaurant called Concheria at Lecerito or Cerito beach,” someone mentioned.

“Lecerito, Cerito Beach … where the hell is that?”

Oh about 20-30 miles south of  Tijuana’s Long Bar. Great spot, local joint, nice bar, nice beach, good street tacos, burritos, and chili rellenos.  Sounds good?

A Convention in Mexico? This is a first…

Sure, made a deal with the owners, gave them a ton of pesos to buy 15 kegs and said we would be down this weekend with some nice and mellow friends. Oh yes, we told them we would supply the paper cups and bring a rock and roll band.

Hummm … sounds like a bitchen time …

Max Meda Mexico - notice the wooden kegs

The first thing one must do to start any Mac Meda Convention is to pop the kegs – Eber (RIP) knocks out the plug while Mike Wilson supervises and Buddy Lundy gives the two finger salute.  Check out the wooden spigots and kegs.

So you spread the word …  pass out a pickup truck of fliers with directions that you made off the copy machine when the teacher was not looking. And didn’t give a shit if the cops heard, in fact they  were breathing easier that weekend, knowing a Convention was going to held out of country!

Then you packed every vehicle you could find with every bitchen person for a road trip down south.

The results; one huge, insane, blowout beer-drinking Convention that included pushing cars over, falling down drunks and bottle rocket and firecracker wars that finally ended up with the Federales coming (slang Gringo term for the Mexican Federal Police)  that wanted everyone OUT of the fricking country …

… which is was not a good thing to do, considering there was 200 plus Gringos and a few of them.

So, things started getting out of hand,  the next thing that happened, the walls started to be ripped down, a car got turned over, and they lit the place on fire …

Just boys and girls having a bit of fun….


  1. Gary Wickham says:

    I still have the original 8mm film that I shot at this convention and some other footage of an earlier convention, if I have it reconverted I believe that the quality and color can be enhanced.

    Any thoughts or recommendations out there?

  2. Tim Shea says:

    I was trying to find a pic or two of the 64-69 Hotel Nelson Bar, Dannys Bar(pool and 15 cent shots behind main drag)and Long Bar when I came across you guys. Nice.
    During that time I was a SBCC and SDS “student” spending most of my time between them TJ and Ensenada…the el Cerrito film– Yikes! thats the only place I ever had a .38 special pointed at me by a really pissed off bar owner. Lived in Pacific Beach so maybe some of us staggered into each other at some point. It all makes me wonder how more of us aren’t just memories.

  3. WHEN CRABS ROAR says:

    Jamie I don’t know who or what brought Tom Wolfe to La Jolla, maybe to just get out of the cold eastern weather.

    The first and only time I met him was in the lot at Windansea, looking like he just stepped out of a London musical, complete with white suit, vest, white ducks and a wild colored tie, couldn’t have stood out more if he were wearing neon.

    He states in The Sixties, (a book by Rolling Stone Press copyright 1977) “I must have been a sight, when I look back on it. I looked tremendously old to them. I was thirty-four. I hadn’t been out in the sun since ’61, and I wasn’t about to go out in it again. (I like the ocean air, but that’s about all I like about the shore.) I was like the man from Mars.” This is typical Tom Wolfe bullshit.

    It was a Sunday afternoon and we had just gotten back from a party in Manhattan Beach where the apartment suffered typical Meda injuries, one thing lead to another and we started the Watts Riots (we better not take credit for that little known fact, some people are still pretty upset). Anyway we bullshitted him and know the results of our encounters with him. The Pump House Gang.

    In the book he says that at 24 (one of the older guys), I was “still in “The Life” and then 25 and then 26 and then…and then even pan-thuh age” and yes Tom Wolfe at 68 I still enjoy “The Life” just like I did back then, one day at a time!

    And you”re still a DORK!

    Gary Wickham

    P.S. Hope you enjoyed the Mexico Convention footage it was a pleasure to share it with all of you.

  4. What’s interesting about this Convention is…it’s pure La Jolla Mac Meda. I believe the date was Jan. 9, 1966. It occured a few weeks before the publication of ‘The Pumphouse Gang,’ by Tom Wolfe in the New York Herald-Tribune (I think).

    From the time ‘The Pumphouse Gang’ was published…everything changed.

    How did Tom Wolfe even hear about Mac Meda and everything else that came with it? I’ve heard that when he was in East L.A. a few years earlier, researching the chop shops for the story ‘Kandy-Kolored Tangerine Flake Streamline Baby’…the fellows in the chop shops knew all about Mac Meda knocking down the houses in Sorrento Valley…and gave Tom Wolfe a story idea for the future.

    One way or the other…in Nov. 2006, the L.A. Times did ONE BIG DADDY of an obituary on Jack Macpherson. Dennis McLellan wrote 1/2 page on Jack…and on Tuesday night, November 28, 2006, he actually called Tom Wolfe in New York and told him of the passing of Mac Meda’s cofounder.

  5. Eric Masterman says:

    Sorry Namie, the bit about the football helmet
    and the mattress combo was never entertained that day. Though it makes for a good story.
    I was there. It was my car.

  6. This is GREAT footage! I have always heard of this footage…yeah to Dave Osborn and Kip Ives.

    Now…Jack had footage of the car going over the cliffs at Torrey Pines…does anyone have this? Talk about classic. He apparently was planning on riding the car down…wearing a football helmet and wrapping himself in mattresses…and charging $1.00 admission to watch. I once commented, “But you might have been killed!”. And he got a gleam in his eye and said, “Yeah, but I’d be famous,”.

    A few years before he died, he said he was still thinking about doing it…riding in a car over Torrey Pines cliffs. I planned his funeral more times than I care to remember.

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