Did you look in /usr/src/linux ?
I agree about it being kind of a pain, deciding whether you need some of the options or not. Most are easy, but some are a little harder to decide. When I wanted to recompile my kernel the first time, I just took the one in /usr/src/linux and made changes from there. Once I had a working one I liked, I saved it, both to a different directory, and burned it to a CD with other things I was backing up.