Also Matt, the "pencil stool" symptom is a myth. I talked to a Cancer Registrar once and she said she had never heard of a single Colon Cancer paitent having pencil or ribbon like stools. Their main symptom was alternating Constipation/Diarrhea.If it helps put your mind at ease, when I first started having issues with pain in my left side, I assumed immediately that it could be colon cancer. What Kathleen says about how rare it is in someone your age(And mine, 29) is 100% correct. Does it happen? Yes. But I crunched the numbers once and it appears that about 520 men our age get it every year. More people die each year of lightning strikes. Also, odd wise, it would be 1 in every 39,000 men our age. Math makes me feel better about stuff like this!