Quick: Who were the big winners at last year’s MTV Video Music Awards? You don’t remember, do you? Probably because all that comes to mind is Madonna kissing Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera.

Their PDA publicity stunt was so successful you couldn’t ignore it if you tried (and why would you?), but the ladies-only love triangle almost played out with a different pair of puckers. Party-starter Pink had been on the guest list, but she declined. So although Justin Timberlake and Coldplay snatched up the most Moonmen, Pink’s decision to say “kiss off” makes her one of the night’s biggest winners too.

See, while Madonna may be the all-time queen of the Video Music Awards, making out with the Material Girl sure can send people into a spiral.

Just look at some of the decisions Britney made in the months following the Kiss: A quickie marriage in Las Vegas (later annulled) and a music video with a suicide theme (later toned down). C’mon, obviously something clouded her judgment. And then, like a voodoo doll being toyed with, Spears took a nasty fall during a video shoot, injuring her knee so badly that it required surgery and forced her to cancel her big-budget Onyx Hotel Tour.

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