Consider this sentense:
I liked James. I had met him when I had stopped at the gas station where he had worked.
Someone at an internet forum said:
"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."
Do you think this is correct way to say it and why?