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From a native speaker's point of view, are these sentences both gramatically acceptable and equally common in spoken/written English?

  1. I'll call you when I get to the gym.

  2. I'll call you when I've got to the gym.

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    For some reason, the second one sounds unnatural to me. To do with the verb get, though, not the perfect itself. “I'll call you when I arrive/I've arrived at the gym” is perfectly fine either way. Fairly sure people will use it with get as well, but something about it sounds off to me. May 17, 2014 at 11:11
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    @Janus: Does the second one sound unnatural because in American English, you would say "I'll call you when I've gotten to the gym"? May 17, 2014 at 11:15
  • @Peter Possibly. Though that sounds a bit awkward, too. I think it's just interference from the vastly more common meaning of “I've got to” that makes it a bit garden-pathy. May 17, 2014 at 11:17
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    @Janus: there's no interference in AmE, because got and gotten distinguish these meanings. The second one sounds perfectly fine in American English if you replace got by gotten (and it's definitely incorrect with got). I don't know about British English. May 17, 2014 at 11:56
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    I'm with @PeterShor. American English speakers would say either I get or I've gotten.
    – Barmar
    May 19, 2014 at 19:08

1 Answer 1

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The problem with the second one is tense. When "have" is the auxiliary (or helping) verb, the second verb takes the past participle which usually ends in "-en" and in this case would be "gotten".

"I'll call you when I've gotten to the gym"

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  • You should specify that you're talking about American English here; gotten is not a word in British English. May 24, 2014 at 18:50
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    Interesting! Good to know, thanks for the tip. So for you the second sentence is...acceptable? What about "I've gotten fatter" or some similar sentence?
    – McGurk
    May 25, 2014 at 1:07

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