It really is serious. Here's an excellent interview by National Public Radio's Jacki Lyden with science writer Laurie Garrett--- exactly why this is so dangerous, what happened in 1918, and what you can do to protect yourself. Also, Inside Mexico offers some tips for protecting yourself here.
If you protect yourself, you may also save someone else's life. This can be highly contagious. As Laurie Garrett explains, the genetic material in this virus is similar to the 1918 strain.