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Please explain this sentence to me:

I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked.

Shouldn't it be:

I had met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he worked.

I mean she had to stop before meeting him right?
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PreciousJonesHere's another past perfect example:

I liked James. I met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he worked. Since I stopped at the gas station first before meeting James. Or

I liked James. I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked.
The writer is focused on the time during which he liked James. He had to have gotten to know James before he could like him. So his liking James is not so far in the past as the time when he met James. So he goes backwards in time from the time during which he liked James to the time when he met James. To go backwards in time, you can use the past perfect tense. The writer could have written this:

I liked James. I had met him at a gas station.

Now the meeting took place at the gas station when the writer stopped there, and when James was working there, so those other two situations could also have been expressed with the past perfect.

I liked James. I had met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he had worked.

But all those wordy past perfect tenses are not necessary. It's obvious that James worked at the gas station at the time of the meeting and that the writer stopped there at the time of the meeting. Two people can't meet unless they are in the same place at the same time!

Once the writer establishes that the meeting itself occurred earlier than the period of time during which he liked James, the other situations surrounding the meeting can be expressed with the simple past. (Besides, looked at stylistically, the repetition of all those had's is very tiring to the reader. The reader understands that the time period of the meeting at the gas station precedes the time of liking James. The reader does not have to be told again and again by reading had, had, had, had, ....) The following is quite enough:

I liked James. I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked.

The use of only one past perfect is enough to indicate the two general time periods that the author wants the reader to know about.
1. when the writer liked James
2. when the writer met James (including all the situations and events associated with it)

CJ
Comments  
The two actions being so close to each other, I think the simple past would be better.

However: She had met him at the station long before yesterday.
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Well, as far as I know, Past Perfect is generally not used after when

I think it would be nice if that sentence was ''I met him when I stopped...''
PreciousJonesPlease explain this sentence to me:

I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked.

Shouldn't it be:

I had met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he worked.

I mean she had to stop before meeting him right?

Here's another past perfect example:

I liked James. I met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he worked. Since I stopped at the gas station first before meeting James. Or

I liked James. I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked. This was what was written.
 CalifJim's reply was promoted to an answer.
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That's a very clear, good answer, CJ.

As to the original topic sentence, is the past perfect applicable? To me, it is wrong (or at least not required without further context justifying it).

I had met him when I stopped at the gas station where he worked.
Hi,
Hi guys,

How is this sentence wrong:

I've been called so many names when I was in New York, so to me they're ridiculous and unimportant.

Is it because I was in New York? Please explain this to me.
English 1b3not required without further context justifying it
Correct.

CJ
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PreciousJonesHow is this sentence wrong:

I've been called so many names when I was in New York ...

The main problem is that the present perfect is an indefinite tense. when I was in New York is a definite time. The two do not go together. Don't use a when clause with the present perfect.

CJ